Mfg sales hit new record, up 2.3% in Jan. 2016

Friday March 18, 2016
Written by Manufacturing AUTOMATION
Mar. 18, 2016 - Manufacturing sales rose 2.3 per cent in January to $53.1 billion, the highest level on record, says Statistics Canada, largely due to higher sales of motor vehicles, food, and motor vehicle parts. More than 85 per cent of the increase in January came from these three industries, it adds.

Conversely, sales of petroleum and coal products fell 5.9 per cent as prices continued to decline in the industry.

Constant dollar sales rose 2.4 per cent to their highest level since July 2008, indicating that volumes of goods sold reached levels not recorded since before the 2008-2009 recession, says the agency.

According to the report, sales rose in 16 of 21 industries, representing more than 80 per cent of the manufacturing sector.

Motor vehicle sales increased 9.6 per cent in January to $6.6 billion, the highest level since November 2000, says StatsCan, adding that this was the largest increase in the industry since March 2015. The gains in the motor vehicle industry were the result of two key factors, it notes: changes in the industry toward higher-end models and the lower value of the Canadian dollar.

In addition, Canadian motor vehicle manufacturers are benefitting from a lower Canadian dollar, it notes. StatsCan says most motor vehicles made in Canada are exported to the United States and prices are related to the value of the Canadian dollar. As such, the increased value of the U.S. dollar over the past two years has provided some support to the Canadian-dollar value of these sales.

Sales of food climbed 4.6 per cent in January to $8.4 billion, while the motor vehicle parts industry gained 4.0 per cent at $2.7 billion.

Eight provinces recorded higher sales in January, led by Ontario and Quebec. The only provinces to record declines were Alberta and Nova Scotia.

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