Manufacturing sales jump to $51B in August, signalling 3Q rebound

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OTTAWA – Canadian manufacturing sales in August jumped much more than expected on widespread strength, reinforcing expectations that broad economic growth rebounded in the third quarter.

Statistics Canada said on Tuesday that sales rose by 0.9 percent from July to hit C$51.12 billion ($39.02 billion) as eight of the country’s 10 provinces recorded increases. Market analysts polled by Reuters had forecast a 0.2 percent gain.

READ MORE: Canada’s manufacturing sales hit record $53B in January: StatsCan

Sales advanced in 15 of 21 industries, representing 69 percent of the manufacturing sector, while in volume terms sales climbed by 1.2 percent.

The Bank of Canada, which releases its latest forecasts on Wednesday, is projecting a healthy third quarter recovery after a major wildfire in Alberta in May caused the economy to shrink in the second quarter.

Sales in the food industry rose by 1.7 percent in August to hit a record C$8.57 billion, while the primary metals industry posted a 3.6 percent gain to reach C$3.89 billion.

Sales of transportation equipment, the largest of the 21 industries, dropped by 1.1 percent to C$10.55 billion as unusual one-week shutdowns at some automobile assembly plants cut sales of motor vehicles. Plants usually schedule closures in July.