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Canada manufacturing sales fall less than expected in August

Canadian manufacturing sales fell in August after three consecutive monthly gains, driven mainly by a decline in sales of motor vehicles, Statistics Canada reported.

Manufacturing sales slipped 0.4% to a seasonally adjusted C$58.57 billion in August from a revised C$58.81 billion in July. Econoday projected a 0.7% decrease in sales.

Sales declines were recorded in seven of 21 industries, representing 50.9% of the Canadian manufacturing sector, including transportation equipment, wood product and primary metal.

Total sales of transportation equipment fell 2.4% month over month to C$10.65 billion in August. Motor vehicle sales dropped 8.3% to C$4.88 billion due to unusual assembly plant shutdowns during the month that led to lower production.

Excluding motor vehicles, manufacturing sales were up 0.4% in August.

Inventory levels rose 1.1% month over month in August, and unfilled orders and new orders were up 0.8% and 1.1%, respectively.

In annual terms, total manufacturing sales climbed 3.7% during the month.