(Black Press Media files)

Higher wages, child benefit increases leaving more money in Canadians’ pockets

Fewer Canadians were below the poverty line in 2017 than 2016, Statistics Canada said

When’s the last time you got a raise?

Figures released Tuesday by Statistics Canada show it may have been in 2017, when median after-tax incomes across the country rose by 3.3 per cent to $59,800, after being stagnant for two years.

Of all provinces, B.C. had the biggest hike in after-tax income, with a 7.6 per cent increase from $57,700 in 2016 t0 $62,100 2017.

The agency attributed the increase to a mix of higher wages along with a bump in child benefit amounts brought in by the federal Liberals.

READ MORE: Can the Liberals take all the credit for economic and jobs gains?

Wages themselves rose by 2.7 percent from 2016 to $92,400 in 2017.

The slight hike in income was matched by a drop in the number of Canadians living below the poverty line.

That number fell from 10.6 per cent in in 2016 to 9.5 per cent, or 3.4 million Canadians, in 2017.

Single-parent families saw the biggest decrease in poverty in 2017, with a drop from 29.2 per cent to 22.7 per cent.

The agency said drop was a continuation of a five year trend, and was linked to increases in child benefits amounts.

READ MORE: Employers to raise salaries 2.6% on average next year, says report

READ MORE: Canadians feeling more stress at work than 5 years ago, says poll


@katslepian

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