Decline in manufacturing sector ended in July: Statistics Canada
Ottawa, ON -- Canada's real gross domestic product was unchanged in July 2009, following a 0.1% increase in th...
Ottawa, ON — Canada’s real gross domestic product was unchanged in July 2009, following a 0.1% increase in the previous month, reports Statistics Canada. The strength of the manufacturing and wholesale trade sectors was attributable to a rebound in motor vehicle and parts production. There was also an increase in the accommodation and food service sector.
These gains were offset by declines in the mining sector, which were due in part to temporary closures, and in utilities. Construction, retail trade and municipal public administration were also down.
Growth in manufacturing
The manufacturing sector advanced 0.8% in July, after nine consecutive monthly declines. Durable goods manufacturing was up 2.4%. Output of motor vehicles and parts increased 17%, as activities partially resumed on some assembly lines following temporary closures over the last few months. This production increase bolstered the output of other manufacturing industries.
Non-ferrous metal production and processing manufacturers (+22%) also resumed part of their activities in July. However, those results were weighed down by declines in fabricated metal product manufacturing and non-durable manufacturing (-1.0%).
Value added in wholesale trade rose 1.6% in July. The volume of activity was up for most wholesalers. The gains were particularly strong in automotive products and building materials.
The output of the mining, and oil and gas extraction sector fell 1.5% in July, the ninth consecutive monthly decrease. Output of mining, excluding oil and gas extraction, was down across the sector (-4.2%), except for the coal industry. Iron mines as well as non-metallic minerals mines (which include diamonds) continued to feel the effects of reduced world demand, leading to some temporary shutdowns during the month.
Oil and gas extraction declined 0.4% in July. Support activities for mining, oil and gas extraction continued their downward trend of the last nine months, decreasing 11% in July.
Both electric power generation (-2.6%) and natural gas distribution (-2.7%) decreased because of weaker demand attributable to unseasonably low temperatures, particularly in Central Canada.
Activity in the construction sector declined 0.2% in July. Residential and non-residential building construction both decreased, while engineering and repair work increased. After several months of strong gains, the activity of real estate agents and brokers decreased 0.4% in July.
Value added in retail trade edged down 0.1% in July. The volume of activity was lower in food and beverage stores, and in electronics stores. The volume of activity in pharmacies, general merchandise stores (which include department stores) as well as clothing stores increased.
The finance and insurance sector remained unchanged in July. The increase in financial intermediation (loans and banking activity) was offset by the decrease in trading volumes on the stock markets and a drop in insurance services.
The accommodation and food service sector posted a 0.6% gain in July, paralleling a sharp increase in the number of visitors from other countries. Activity in municipal public administration fell 1.6%, largely as a result of a strike by municipal employees in Toronto.
Data on gross domestic product by industry for August will be released by StatCan on October 30, 2009.