Canadian Plastics

Manufacturing sales down in March, but not for plastics

Plastics held strong, but Canada’s overall manufacturing recovery hit a speed bump in March, returning some of the encouraging gains that the sector had made the previous month, according to new numbers from Statistics Canada.

May 15, 2013   Canadian Plastics

Plastics held strong, but Canada’s overall manufacturing recovery hit a speed bump in March, returning some of the encouraging gains that the sector had made the previous month, according to new numbers from Statistics Canada.

Sales in the factory sector fell 0.3% to $49.5 billion following an upwardly revised 2.8% increase in February, as petroleum and coal products unexpectedly fell.

The March breakdown for Canada showed sales declining in 10 of 21 industries, accounting for about one-third of manufacturing, StatsCan said.

Sales of non-durable goods declined 0.8% to $24.4 billion and were partially offset by a 0.2% increase in sales of durable goods.

The biggest hit came from the important petroleum and coal products industry, which fell by 2.6%. Chemical manufacturing declined by 2%. Clothing sales plunged 17.8%, but they represent a tiny fragment of manufacturing.

On the plus side, sales of plastics and rubber products rose 3.7%, non-metallic minerals by two per cent and motor vehicles by 1.5%.

Sales fell in six provinces in March with most of the decreases reported by manufacturers in New Brunswick and Saskatchewan, StatsCan said. Sales jumped 30.7% in Newfoundland and Labrador and there was very little change in the sales in other provinces.


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