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Manufacturing sales up in August: StatsCan

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The transportation equipment and petroleum and coal product industries post the largest gains, the agency said.

Manufacturing sales increased 1.6% to $53.5 billion in August, following two consecutive monthly declines, a new report from Statistics Canada said.

The gain was mainly attributable to higher sales in the transportation equipment, and petroleum and coal product industries.

“Sales were up in 8 of the 21 industries, representing 66% of the Canadian manufacturing sector,” the agency said. “Once price changes are taken into account, sales volume in the manufacturing sector rose 1.2% in August.”

Sales in the transportation equipment industry rose 8.2% to $10.4 billion, after falling 13.6% in July, StatsCan said. “This growth was the result of gains in the motor vehicle (+12.9%) and motor vehicle parts (+5.7%) industries, primarily reflecting higher volumes generated by increased production after the longer-than-usual shutdowns of motor vehicle assembly plants in July,” the report said. “In constant dollars, sales volumes rose 13.3% in the motor vehicle and 5.8% in the motor vehicle parts industries in August.”


Sales in the petroleum and coal product industry increased 3.2% to $4.8 billion in August – a second consecutive monthly gain. “The increase primarily reflected higher prices for petroleum and coal products,” StatsCan said. “After removing the effect of price changes, sales volumes decreased 1.3% in August.”

According to StatsCan, sales were also up in the primary metal (+3.1%), machinery (+4.0%), beverage and tobacco product (+4.2%) and wood product (+1.6%) industries.

Higher sales in current dollars were partially offset by decreases in the chemical (-3.6%) and computer and electronic product (-6.5%) industries, StatsCan said. “In constant dollars, sales fell 3.9% in the chemical and 6.5% in the computer and electronic product industries, indicating that a lower volume of goods sold was behind these declines,” it said.

Provincially, sales increased in eight provinces in August, led by Ontario and Alberta, while Manitoba and Nova Scotia reported declines. “After two consecutive months of declines, sales in Ontario rose 2.8% in August to $24.9 billion, primarily due to a 10.4% gain in the transportation equipment industry,” StatsCan said. “The petroleum and coal product and machinery industries also reported higher sales.” In Alberta, meanwhile, sales were up 1.2% to $5.8 billion, following two monthly decreases.

On the other hand, the largest monthly decrease was in Manitoba, where sales fell 1.5% to $1.5 billion in August. “This was the second consecutive monthly decline and was largely due to lower sales of non-durable goods,” StatsCan said.


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