Wholesale Trade

Overview

Employment summary

Growth (2016-2017):
-7.0%
Job growth (2016-2017):
-6,100
Total employment (2017):
83,600

Source: 2017 Labour Force Survey

Key points
  • The Wholesale and Retail Trade industry is the largest employer in B.C. In 2015, it accounted for just over 15 percent of all jobs in the province.
  • The industry is sensitive to general economic conditions, as well as to changing consumer trends.
  • Most jobs in this industry are located in the regions with the highest populations: Mainland / Southwest and Vancouver Island / Coast.
  • Wages for most workers in this industry are below the provincial all-industry average.

Wholesalers and retailers sell consumers goods that have been purchased from suppliers. The goods sold are produced locally or imported from other regions and other countries.

Wholesalers can be thought of as “middle men,” usually supplying goods for resale or industrial use.

Retailers generally deal directly with final consumers of goods, primarily individuals and households.

The Wholesale and Retail Trade industry includes everything from small corner stores to big-box chains and wholesale distribution centres.

Workforce

Gender

Employment by gender in 2017

  Men: 65%
  Women: 35%

Source: 2017 Labour Force Survey

Provincial average in 2017

  Men: 52%
  Women: 48%

Source: 2017 Labour Force Survey

Age groups

% of employees under 25 years of age

  • 2012
  • 2017
  • B.C. average (2017)

Source: 2017 Labour Force Survey

% of employees 55 years and older

  • 2012
  • 2017
  • B.C. average (2017)

Source: 2017 Labour Force Survey

Employment

Types of employment

2012 2017 B.C. average (2017)
Part time
(% of employees working part time)
2012
11%
2017
9%
B.C. average (2017)
22%
Self-employed
(% of employees who are self-employed)
2012
21%
2017
13%
B.C. average (2017)
18%
Temporary jobs
(% of employees in temporary jobs)
2012
5%
2017
6%
B.C. average (2017)
14%

Source: 2017 Labour Force Survey

Workplace

% of workers in firms less than 20 employees

  • 2012
  • 2017
  • B.C. average (2017)

Source: 2017 Labour Force Survey

% of workers in private sector jobs

  • 2012
  • 2017
  • B.C. average (2017)

Source: 2017 Labour Force Survey

Unemployment rate

  • 2012
  • 2017
  • B.C. average (2017)

Source: 2017 Labour Force Survey

Earnings

Average hourly wages in this industry

Men

  • 2012
  • 2017
  • B.C. average (2017)

Source: 2017 Labour Force Survey

Women

  • 2012
  • 2017
  • B.C. average (2017)

Source: 2017 Labour Force Survey

Youth

  • 2012
  • 2017
  • B.C. average (2017)

Source: 2017 Labour Force Survey

Location of work

Select your region:
Vancouver Island / Coast Mainland / Southwest Thompson-Okanagan Kootenay Cariboo Northeast North Coast & Nechako
  % employment of this industry
  % employment of all industries

Vancouver Island / Coast

Mainland / Southwest

Thompson-Okanagan

Kootenay

Cariboo

North Coast & Nechako

Northeast

Source: 2017 Labour Force Survey

Employment outlook

2018 2023 2028
Forecasted employment
2018
87,900
2023
93,300
2028
96,300

Source: B.C. Labour Market Outlook

Forecasted average annual employment growth rate

  • 2018 - 2023
  • 2023 - 2028

Source: B.C. Labour Market Outlook

Forecasted industry share of total employment

  • 2018
  • 2023
  • 2028

Source: B.C. Labour Market Outlook

Additional resources

Industry Canada
http://www.strategis.ic.gc.ca/engdoc/main.html

North American Industry Classification System
http://www.statcan.gc.ca/concepts/industry-industrie-eng.htm

Retail Council of Canada
http://www.retailcouncil.org

Retail Wholesale Union
http://www.rwunion.com

Shelfspace – The Association for Retail Entrepreneurs
http://www.shelfspace.ca