CORRECTED-UPDATE 1-Consumers help boost Canada Q2 GDP by 3.1 pct

Fri Aug 29, 2014 9:31am EDT
 
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(Corrects rate of U.S. Q1 decline, 2.1 percent, not 1.0 percent, in paragraph 2)

OTTAWA Aug 29 (Reuters) - Persistent consumer spending helped push up Canadian economic growth by more than expected, to an annualized 3.1 percent in the second quarter, from a downwardly revised 0.9 percent in the first quarter, according to Statistics Canada data on Friday.

As in the United States, the first quarter had been held back partly by bad weather, though the Canadian economy did not actually shrink. U.S. second quarter growth came in at 4.2 percent, after a first quarter decline of 2.1 percent. Canada's first quarter growth was originally reported at 1.2 percent.

Canadian growth was the largest quarterly gain since the third quarter of 2011. Households have been largely responsible for keeping the economy going, and once again led growth in the second quarter, with their final consumption expenditure rising by an annualized 3.8 percent.

For the month of June, real growth in gross domestic product (GDP) was 0.3 percent, led by mining, oil and gas, as well as construction and wholesale and retail trade.

The median forecast in a Reuters survey of analysts was for an annualized 2.7 percent rise in second quarter GDP and for a 0.2 percent boost in June.

On a nominal basis, which is important for tax revenues, growth fell to a non-annualized 1.0 percent in the second quarter from 1.6 percent in the first. This was because GDP prices rose by only 0.2 percent during the second quarter from the first quarter, after climbing 1.4 percent in the first; energy prices accounted for most of the difference. (Reporting by Randall Palmer; Editing by Chizu Nomiyama)