Wages expected to go up, but workers’ spending power could still drop after inflation


TORONTO — A new survey says wages are going up in Canada, with employers projecting an average annual pay increase of 2.5 per cent for next year.

When excluding organizations that are planning salary freezes, the poll found average salaries are expected to rise 2.7 per cent in 2022.

The LifeWorks survey demonstrates growing confidence in the country’s economic outlook compared with last year’s projection, when employers forecasted an increase of 1.9 per cent including freezes.

Still, the salary estimates fall below Canada’s rising inflation rate, which could leave workers with less spending power despite wage hikes.

Statistics Canada says the consumer price index in August rose 4.1 per cent compared with a year ago — the largest year-over-year inflation increase since March 2003.

Meanwhile, the highest wage increases are expected in the wholesale trade industry, where average salaries excluding freezes are expected to climb 3.1 per cent, followed by three per cent wage increases projected in the construction, accommodation and food services, and information technology sectors.