B.C.’s big bucks
B.C. placed fourth on the list of provinces with high-income residents, according to a federal study using data from 2004 tax returns.
Among Canadians earning more than $89,000 per year, or the top five per cent of income earners, nearly half or 46 per cent lived in Ontario.
Quebec was a distant second at 18 per cent, followed by Alberta with 15 per cent and B.C. with 13 per cent.
The distribution of high incomes has likely shifted in the past three years with the weakening of central Canada’s manufacturing sector and strong economic growth in western provinces.
Nationally, three quarters of the highest income earners in the study were men, and more than half were between the ages of 45 and 64.
The picture has slowly improved for women, who accounted for one in seven of the top five per cent of income earners in 1982, and climbed to one in four by 2004.
More than three quarters of the top earners were married.
The study showed that the top five per cent of Canadian taxpayers collected 25 per cent of all income and paid 36 per cent of taxes.