07/26/2012 02:05 EDT | Updated 09/25/2012 05:12 EDT

Weekly paycheques grew slightly in May

Average weekly paycheques for salaried Canadian workers were $894.61 in May, a 0.5-per-cent uptick from the level of a month earlier.

Statistics Canada data released Thursday showed earnings of non-farm payroll employees increased 2.5 per cent on an annualized basis.

The data agency said the increase reflected a number of factors, including higher wages but changes in the composition of employment by industry, occupation and level of job experience.

The average workweek was 32.9 hours during the month, unchanged from April and also unchanged from the same month a year earlier.

But "the size of that weekly paycheque depends a lot on the industry in which you work," ATB Financial economist Todd Hirsch said in a note after the data's release.

Workers in the construction, educational services, retail trade, accommodation and food services and manufacturing industries saw higher than average salary increases.

In health care and social assistance, earning increases were below the national average.

In Alberta, Hirsch noted that the gap between what workers in the oil and gas industry earn ($1,864 a week) and what those in the accommodation and food sector earn ($413 a week on average) is large.

Overall, the average paycheque of an Albertan worker was $1,048.32, well above the national average.

Total non-farm payroll employment rose by 76,900 between April and May, the third consecutive monthly increase. Most sectors showed job gains during the month.