Canada manufacturing PMI ebbs to three-month low in July

Thu Aug 1, 2013 9:33am EDT
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By John Tilak

TORONTO (Reuters) - The pace of Canadian manufacturing growth eased to a three-month low in July as output and new orders had only modest gains, the RBC Canadian Manufacturing Purchasing Managers' index showed on Thursday.

The index, a gauge of manufacturing business conditions, slipped to 52 in July after adjusting for seasonal variation from 52.4 in June.

A reading above 50 shows growth in the sector.

"Canada's manufacturing sector stayed afloat in July, although conditions were slightly less favorable than on average historically," Craig Wright, chief economist at Royal Bank of Canada, said in a statement.

"We expect the U.S. economy to shift into higher gear in the second half of the year, slowly increasing demand for Canada's exports, and manufacturing goods in particular."

Data released on Wednesday showed U.S. economic growth rose more than expected in the second quarter.

Though strengthening conditions in the United States are a good sign for Canadian businesses, a prolonged recession in Europe and a slowdown in China have challenged Canada's export-driven economy.

The economy grew by 0.2 percent in May from April, according to government data on Wednesday, below forecasts and dampening expectations for growth in the second quarter.   Continued...

Workers walk through a newly opened Toyota automobile assembly plant in Woodstock, about 130 km (81 miles) southwest of Toronto, Ontario, December 4, 2008. REUTERS/Mark Blinch