This will be reassuring news for the manufacturing sector: Canada’s manufacturing sales rose almost two percent in December, the sixth increase in seven months.
In its latest monthly Survey of Manufacturing, Statistics Canada reports that sales rose 1.6 percent to $43 billion.
In November the sector saw sales edge up just 0.1 percent.
Manufacturing sales increased for the sixth time in seven months. Source: Statistics Canada. Click the image to enlarge.
StatsCan says gains were mostly concentrated in the transportation equipment industry. The aerospace products and parts, motor vehicle and petroleum and coal product industries were also largely responsible for December’s increase.
Breakdown by industry
Production in the aerospace products and parts industry rose 28.1 percent, following a 17 percent decline in November.
Sales in the motor vehicle industry increased 4.4 percent in December to $3.6 billion. Sales here have been rising since January 2009, reports StatsCan.
The petroleum and coal products industry reported a sales increase of 2.4 percent in December. The gain reflected greater sales volumes reported by several refineries.
The advance in overall manufacturing was partially offset by a 6.4 percent decline in the non-metallic mineral products industry.
Region by region
In December, eight provinces showed stronger manufacturing sales.
• Ontario saw the largest gain, where sales increased by $438 million to $19.8 billion.
• New Brunswick reported an increase in sales of $156 million—its third monthly rise after a 26.1 percent drop in September.
• In British Columbia, manufacturing sales decreased 2.3 percent, reflecting declines in both the primary metals and wood products industries.
Inventories continue to fall
Inventory levels declined one percent to $59 billion.
This was the 10th monthly decline in 2009, leaving inventories 11.3 percent lower than December 2008 levels.
Inventory decreases were widespread across the manufacturing sector as levels contracted in 17 of 21 industries.
The inventory-to-sales ratio declined for the fifth time in seven months, reaching 1.37 in December.
December’s level is close to the ratio’s normal levels, which have not been seen since November 2008.