OTTAWA (Reuters) - Canadian producer prices rose in February, ending five consecutive months of declines as the cost of energy and petroleum products rebounded, Statistics Canada said on Monday.
The industrial product price index was up 1.8 percent in February, greater than economists' expectations for a 1 percent gain and the largest increase since June 2008.
Still, prices were down 1.6 percent from a year ago, while January's monthly figure was upwardly revised to a decline of 0.3 percent.
February's gains were widespread, with a 8.8 percent increase in prices for energy and petroleum products contributing the most to the index's rise. It was the sector's first increase since June of last year when crude prices peaked and the group's biggest gain since June 2009.
The sector was pushed higher by a 13.2 percent jump in gasoline prices.
Higher prices for crude energy products also pushed the raw materials price index up 6.1 percent in February from January. Crude energy product prices climbed 16 percent, with conventional crude oil surging 17 percent, its largest increase since March 2009.
Reporting by Leah Schnurr Editing by W Simn