Canada’s economy slightly better in April than expected; GDP grows 0.3%
OTTAWA — Canada’s economy had a second month of growth in April, building momentum with a 0.3 per cent increase in gross domestic product compared with March, Statistics Canada reported last week.
Canada’s economy took a step backwards in February — when output was affected by a number of production shutdowns — but resumed growth in March, when the GDP advanced by 0.1 per cent.
Emanuella Enenajor, an economist at CIBC World Markets, said April’s increase was in line with her estimates and slightly better than the consensus estimate — but not robust.
“Growth in April was primarily driven by resources, after temporary disruptions to production. Beyond the bounce back in those temporary factors, and a surge in wholesale, underlying growth was relatively muted,” Enenajor wrote in a research note.
“Today’s data are in line with our outlook for 2.5 per cent growth in Q2.”
The second quarter, which began April 1, officially ends June 30 but Statistics Canada won’t be scheduled to release its report for the three-month period until Aug. 31.
There have been a number of factors that have slowed Canada’s recovery from the deep recession that ended in mid-2009.
Among the chief concerns has been the lingering European debt crisis that has been a drag on other regions of the global economy, including in Asia and North America — all important markets for Canadian exports.
Statistics Canada reported Friday that most of the April increase came in mining and oil and gas extraction and, to a lesser extent, wholesale trade.
Transportation services as well as the agriculture, forestry, fishing and hunting sector also increased.
Retail trade, manufacturing, accommodation and food services and the public sector declined.
Mining and oil and gas extraction rose 2.7 per cent in April after declines of 2.0 per cent in February and 1.1 per cent in March.
Wholesale trade was up 1.2 per cent in April, a fifth consecutive monthly increase.