OTTAWA, Feb 7 (Reuters) - The pace of purchasing activity in Canada slowed modestly in January as inventories contracted and the pace of price increases cooled, according to Ivey Purchasing Managers Index data released on Tuesday.
The seasonally adjusted index fell to 57.2 from 60.8 in December. A reading above 50 indicates an increase in the rate of activity.
The unadjusted index rose to 52.3 from 49.4.
On an adjusted basis, the measure of inventories shrank to 46.4 from 54.1. Growth in prices slowed to 70.1 from 73.8, which was likely to give companies some relief.
On the upside, employment increased to 53.5 from 51.7. Supplier deliveries remained in contraction territory, though the index edged up to 46.6 from 45.9.
Reporting by Leah Schnurr Editing by W Simon