03/16/2013 01:21 EDT | Updated 05/31/2013 11:00 EDT

The Highest Paying Industries In Canada, And How Saskatchewan Surpassed This Alberta Staple


Alberta has long been the reigning champ when it comes to well-paying oil and gas jobs, with Canadians from every corner of the country changing industries and postal codes to get their piece of the pie.

But that crown may have quietly been passed on.

Statistics Canada numbers show that based on average hourly wages, the highest paying industry from coast to coast is what the data agency qualifies as mining, quarrying, and oil and gas extraction. Numbers also show that until November of last year, the Alberta oil patch recorded the highest average hourly wage of any industry in Canada.

The industry with the next highest average hourly wage in Canada was utilities, which recorded a figure of $37.10 an hour as of December; the construction industry came in third with an average hourly wage of $30.71.

Click through the slideshow below to see how all other industries in the country compare.

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Industry Average Hourly Wages Across Canada

The average hourly wage in the oil patch in Alberta, until November was $40.68, high enough to claim the title of highest paying industry in Canada. But that is when Alberta may have reached it's zenith, its climax and has since started going down, ahem, hill.

That average had been in constant decline from it's high mark of $43.32 in August of last year. And as the average hourly wage of those who extract oil and gas in Alberta slowly dropped, those workers doing the same work across the province's eastern border saw their average hourly wage rise and surpass that of Albertans in December.

Saskatchewan is relatively new to the oil and gas, and oilsands game, but an aggressive push to kick start the fledgling industry has already left a deep impact in the once have-not province.

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Saskatchewan is posting an, albeit humble, budget surplus this year. It's energy superpower to the west is deep in the red.

The population in Saskatchewan had for decades been in decline - due to massive exodus of people looking for opportunities in Alberta - but has been able to reverse the tide in the last decade, with more Saskatchewan residents than ever trying their fortune in local industries.

In the last few years, what seemed to be an eternal sleepy real estate market in Saskatchewan has heated up to record levels.

And, if Stats Canada numbers are any indication, those wanting to get the most money from an oil and gas job may have to travel to Saskatchewan, not Alberta.