Canada retail sales up in Feb but still lower than November

Wed Apr 23, 2014 12:54pm EDT
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OTTAWA (Reuters) - Canadian retail sales grew for the second consecutive month in February, by 0.5 percent from January, but still have not completely recouped December's weather-induced losses, according to Statistics Canada data released on Wednesday.

The sales increase follows a 0.9 percent rise in January and a 1.4 percent drop in December. The value of sales was C$41.03 billion ($37.30 billion), still a shade lower than November's peak of C$41.05 billion. All the figures are seasonally adjusted.

In volume terms, relevant for calculating real economic growth, sales advanced by 0.1 percent in February but remained a full 0.8 percent below November's peak.

Excluding motor vehicle and parts dealers, which registered no change in February, retail sales were up 0.6 percent. Seven of 11 sectors, representing 56 percent of retail sales, rose, with the largest advances in health and personal care stores and general merchandise stores. Gasoline sales fell 0.3 percent.

($1=$1.10 Canadian)

(Reporting by Randall Palmer; Editing by Chizu Nomiyama)

People walk past a Crocs store in Quebec City, July 25, 2008. REUTERS/Mathieu Belanger