Earnings: Public Eclipses Private

CBJ – It likely comes as no surprise, but a new report confirms that the average public sector employee makes more money than a comparable employee in the private sector.  But what may open some eyes is just how much more.  On average, the public-sector employee earns between 18 and 37% more money per year. The report was authored by the Canadian Federation of Independent Business.

The report, which compares employee compensation in the private and public sectors found that, when salaries, benefits and working hours are factored in, a private sector employee makes up to $8,150 less per year, and works up to six hours more each week, compared to someone doing the same job for the government.

If government workers were paid at the same rate as their private sector counterparts, Canadian taxpayers would save up to $20 billion a year.

CFIB chief economist Ted Mallett said, while the numbers are startling, the organization has arrived at similar conclusions in previous reports on the subject.

Mallett added that the $20 billion figure is likely an underestimate, as the CFIB was not able to find good metrics to measure certain employee benefits.

The report gleaned some of its information from the 2011 National Household Survey and found the compensation gap widens when employment benefits including working hours and pensions are taken into account. The findings are based on the average full-time employment earnings of more than 7.2 million Canadians.