UPDATE 1-Canada industrial capacity use rises in first quarter of 2016

Thu Jun 9, 2016 8:37am EDT
 
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OTTAWA, June 9 (Reuters) - Canada's industrial capacity use in the first quarter of 2016 edged up from the previous quarter on higher activity in the oil and gas extraction industries, Statistics Canada said on Thursday.

Capacity utilization was 81.4 percent in the first quarter, slightly higher than the 81.3 percent forecast by analysts in a Reuters poll. Statscan lowered the fourth quarter figure to 80.9 percent from an initial 81.1 percent.

The utilization rate for oil and gas extraction rose 1.7 percentage points to 79.0 percent on higher volumes. The energy sector has suffered heavily from a drop in prices.

Manufacturing as a whole operated at 83.2 percent capacity, the highest since the first quarter of 2007.

The utilization rate of transportation equipment manufacturing rose 1.5 percentage points to a record 94.8 percent on a sharp increase in the production of motor vehicles and parts.

(Reporting by David Ljunggren Editing by W Simon)