OTTAWA, Jan 21 (Reuters) - Canadian wholesale sales decreased by 0.3 percent in November, following gains in the previous two months, said Statistics Canada in data released on Wednesday.
Analysts had expected a decline of 0.1 percent. Wholesale trade dropped to C$54.03 billion ($44.74 billion) for November, down from a record high of C$54.18 billion ($44.87 billion) in October, the federal statistical agency said.
Three of seven sectors recorded drops in sales for November, led by the machinery, equipment and supplies subsector, which declined by 2.8 percent in the month. But the agency said losses were partially offset by higher sales in the motor vehicle and parts subsector, which rose by 2.8 percent.
The building materials and supplies subsector saw sales decrease by 1.7 percent in November, its first decline in 2014. The farm products subsector also recorded a 7.3 percent decrease for the month.
Inventories rose by 0.1 percent in November, according to Statistics Canada. This was an 11th consecutive monthly increase in inventories, with gains in three of the seven subsectors.
$1 = 1.2076 Canadian dollars Reporting by Mike De Souza; Editing by Chizu Nomiyama