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Canadian manufacturing sales fell 1.8 percent to C$53.9 billion (US$42.7 billion) in June, following three consecutive monthly gains. The declines were mainly due to lower sales in the petroleum and coal product, transportation equipment and chemical industries.
Sales were down in 15 of 21 industries, representing 72.1 percent of the manufacturing sector in Canada. Sales of non-durable goods declined 2.2 percent, while sales of durable goods were down 1.5 percent.
In constant dollars, sales declined 1 percent, indicating that lower volumes of manufactured goods were sold in June.
Sales in the petroleum and coal product industry decreased 7.1 percent to C$4.6 billion (US$3.6 billion) in June, following a 3 percent decline in May. Lower prices for petroleum and coal products (-4.1 percent) and lower volumes, particularly in eastern refineries, contributed to the decline in June. Constant dollar sales of petroleum and coal products fell 3.5 percent.
Sales in the transportation equipment industry declined 2.3 percent to C$11.3 billion (US$8.9 billion) in June, following a 4 percent increase in May. Compared with June of last year, sales in the transportation equipment industry were up 5.1 percent. The declines in June 2017 were the result of decreases in the motor vehicle (-1.8 percent) and aerospace product and parts (-4.1 percent) industries.
Chemical industry sales fell 4.5 percent to C$4.3 billion (US$3.4 billion) in June, after rising 2.6 percent in May. The declines in this industry were widespread and were most pronounced in pesticide, fertilizer and other agricultural chemical manufacturing. Sales in the chemical industry in June were up 3.6 percent compared with June 2016. In constant dollars terms, sales in the industry decreased 3.1 percent from May to June.
The declines were partially offset by higher sales in six industries, led by food (+0.7 percent) and machinery (+1.8 percent).
Sales decreased in eight provinces in June, led by Ontario and Quebec.
Manufacturing sales in Ontario fell 1.7 percent to C$25.9 billion (US$20.5 billion) in June, following a 2.6 percent gain in May. The decline was the largest decrease in Ontario since May 2016, when sales fell C$455 million (US$360.1 million). Despite the monthly decline in manufacturing sales in Ontario, sales were 4.1 percent higher in the province compared with June 2016. While 16 of 21 industries in Ontario reported lower sales in June, the largest decreases were observed in the motor vehicle manufacturing (-1.7 percent) and chemical (-4.9 percent) industries.
Sales in Quebec decreased 3.3 percent to C$12.3 billion (US$9.7 billion) in June, following a 1.8 percent decline in the previous month. Fifteen of 21 industries in Quebec reported lower sales in June, led by petroleum and coal products, and aerospace products and parts. Despite the monthly decline, manufacturing sales in the province were up 4.5 percent compared with June 2016.
Sales in Alberta decreased 2 percent to C$5.9 billion (US$4.7 billion) in June, after seven consecutive monthly increases. Much of the decline stemmed from the petroleum and coal product industry and the chemical industry.
Manitoba and British Columbia were the two provinces with higher manufacturing sales in June. Sales in Manitoba rose 6 percent to C$1.6 billion (US$1.3 billion), the third consecutive monthly increase. Year over year, sales in Manitoba were up 11.9 percent. Higher sales in the transportation equipment, food, and primary metal industries were responsible for the gains in June.
In British Columbia, sales were up 0.9 percent to C$4.2 billion (US$3.3 billion) in June, mainly as a result of gains in the petroleum and coal product, electric equipment and appliance, and machinery industries. The increases were partly offset by declines in the transportation equipment and wood products industries.
Manufacturing inventories edged down 0.2 percent in June, for the second consecutive month. Inventories declined in 6 of 21 industries, with the petroleum and coal product industry posting the largest decline (-7.4 percent). The decreases were partially offset by higher inventories in 15 industries, led by a 1.2 percent gain in the primary metal industry.
The inventory-to-sales ratio increased from 1.34 in May to 1.36 in June. This ratio measures the time, in months, that would be required to exhaust inventories if sales were to remain at their current level.
Unfilled orders fell 2.1 percent to C$87.3 billion (US$69.1 billion) in June. Transportation equipment, along with computer and electronic product manufacturing, were the main industries behind the decrease. An increase in unfilled orders in the chemical industry partially offset the declines.
New orders were down 3 percent to C$52.1 billion (US$41.2 billion) in June, following a 3.3 percent decline in May. Seventeen of 21 industries posted lower levels. The decreases in new orders were more pronounced in the fabricated metal product, petroleum and coal product, and transportation equipment industries.