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Immigrant Children Grow Up To Out-Earn Canadian-Born Peers, Data Reveals

By cvf, 02/07/2023

Immigrants who came to Canada as children grow up to earn less than other Canadians in their early 20s but earn more by the time they hit their 30s, the latest Statistics Canada data reveals.

In its Economic Outcomes of Taxfiling Immigrants Admitted as Children Compare to Canadian Tax payers by Age at Taxation in 2020 report, the statistical and demographic services agency documents the extra earning power of immigrants who arrive in Canada as children by the time they reach 30 years of age.

That data shows immigrants earned a median annual income of only $8,400, or almost a third less, 29.4 per cent, compared to the annual median income of $11,900 for all those who filed income tax reports in 2020.

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And immigrants continue to earn less on average than Canadians well into their 20s. 

Then, at age 26, the data shows immigrants suddenly start earning more than their fellow Canadians. By the age of 30, the data shows immigrants out-earning their fellow Canadians by almost 8.6 per cent with immigrants raking in a medium annual income of $50,200 compared to the $46,230 median annual income of Canadians as a whole.

The reason for the income disparities between immigrants and other Canadians is attributable to their greater education. Immigrant families encourage their children to pursue more education and graduate more often with advanced degrees. 

At every age, significantly more immigrant taxpayers reported post-secondary tuition fees than did the average Canadian. 

By the time they hit 30+ years of age – at which point most university students are in post-graduate programs – more than a third of immigrant tax payers, 33.7 per cent, reported post-secondary tuition fees on their income tax reports compared to barely over a quarter, 27.2 per cent, of all Canadians. 

With that greater education and more advanced degrees, immigrants are often able to land better-paying jobs.

This latest data supports the observations gleaned from previous Statistics Canada reports of the earning potential and educational trends among immigrants in Canada.

In its Socioeconomic Outcomes Of Immigrants Admitted To Canada As Children, 2019 released last year, Statistics Canada also noted the children of economic immigrants to Canada earned less than the average Canadian worker, 15.5 per cent less at age 20, because they were more likely to be attending classes.

Higher Educational Levels Among Immigrants Helps Them Land Better-Paying Jobs

“At age 20, immigrants who were admitted as children had lower median wages, $10,900, than the overall Canadian population of $12,900,” notes the report. “This is associated with the immigrants’ higher post-secondary education participation.”

The authors of that Statistics Canada report suggested the reason so many more economic immigrants’ children attend university or college is because of the criteria used in the Comprehensive Ranking System (CRS) to select those applicants most likely to succeed in Canada.

“Canada’s selection process for economic principal applicants heavily emphasizes their education, skills and work experience,” noted Statistics Canada. “As a result, the majority of immigrant taxpayers admitted under this category have completed some post-secondary education at the time of their admission.”


Since their parents tend to have more education, the children of these economic immigrants tend to follow in their parents’ footsteps and also go for higher education.

“Immigrants admitted as children of economic immigrant families have much higher post-secondary education participation than their counterparts admitted through other immigration categories, particularly during early adulthood,” noted Statistics Canada.

“In 2019, 75.4 per cent of 20-year-old immigrants admitted as children of economic immigrant families participated in postsecondary education.”

Children Of Refugees Are The Least Likely To Go To College Or University

That compared to a participation rate in post-secondary education of 60.7 per cent for those children who came to Canada under family sponsorship programs and 58.9 per cent for the overall Canadian population. Immigrants admitted as children of refugee families had the lowest participation in postsecondary education at age 20 with only 53.9 per cent of them going on to college or university.

A good way for foreign workers to immigrate to Canada is through the Express Entry system, which manages Canada’s immigration applications intake and allows applicants who meet eligibility criteria to submit an online profile, known as an Expression of interest (EOI), under one of three federal Canada immigration programs or a participating provincial immigration program to the Express Entry Pool.

Candidates’ profiles are ranked against each other according to the CRS points-based system with the highest-ranked candidates considered for  Invitations to apply (ITAs) for permanent residence. Those receiving an ITA must quickly submit a full application and pay the processing fees, within a delay of 60 days.

The post Immigrant Children Grow Up To Out-Earn Canadian-Born Peers, Data Reveals appeared first on Canada Immigration and Visa Information. Canadian Immigration Services and Free Online Evaluation..



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