Household spending boosts leading indicator

Fri Nov 18, 2011 8:36am EST
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OTTAWA (Reuters) - Canada's composite leading indicator increased by 0.2 percent in October on continued strength in household spending, Statistics Canada said on Friday.

Statscan revised September's data to a 0.1 percent advance from the initial 0.1 percent decline.

The housing index grew by 1.6 percent -- the largest gain since the 1.9 percent advance recorded in March 2011 -- on higher housing starts and a rebound in existing home sales.

The hard-hit manufacturing sector put in another weak performance, with new orders dropping 5.5 percent from September. The stock market index fell by 2.4 percent.

The leading indicator is used as a predictor of future economic trends. The unsmoothed index, reflecting raw data, was up 1.6 percent.

(Reporting by David Ljunggren; Editing by Theodore d'Afflisio)