April 30, 2013 / 12:52 PM / in 5 years

Canada's economy picks up speed in February

OTTAWA (Reuters) - Canada’s economy grew faster than expected in February, Statistics Canada said on Tuesday, and it revised upward the growth estimate for January, citing strength in potash mining, oil and gas and manufacturing.

The Canadian flag is seen on top of a flagpole in the midst of high-rise buildings in the financial district of Toronto April 3, 2009. REUTERS/Mark Blinch

Gross domestic product by industry expanded 0.3 percent in the month, compared with market forecasts for 0.2 percent growth. Statscan said the economy grew 0.3 percent in January, up from 0.2 percent initially estimated.

Compared with February 2012, gross domestic product expanded 1.7 percent.

The biggest lift came from mining, quarrying and oil and gas extraction, which expanded 2.2 percent thanks to a significant increase in output from potash mines, increased oil production and support activities in the energy sector.

The hard-hit manufacturing sector continued to recover with 0.8 percent growth and construction gained 0.2 percent.

Overall, goods-producing industries grew 0.9 percent.

Services, by contrast, eked out a mere 0.1 percent gain as the end of a labor dispute in professional hockey continued to boost the arts and entertainment sector, offsetting a downturn in wholesale trade.

Reporting by Louise Egan and Alex Paterson; Editing by Kenneth Barry

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