OTTAWA (Reuters) - A stronger manufacturing sector boosted Canada's industrial capacity use to 82.7 percent in the second quarter of 2014, the highest level for seven years, Statistics Canada said on Wednesday.
Market analysts had expected capacity utilization of 82.8 percent. The increase - which marked the fourth consecutive quarter of growth - propelled the rate to its highest since the 82.9 percent seen in the second quarter of 2007.
The manufacturing sector operated at 82.0 percent of capacity, up 1.0 percentage points from the first quarter. The transportation equipment manufacturing industry rose 3.9 percentage points to a record high 93.7 percent.
Following a particularly cold winter, demand for electricity declined, cutting the electric power generation, transmission and distribution's industry capacity use by 2.8 percentage points to 85.7 percent.
The rate for the oil and gas extraction industry edged up by 0.2 percentage points to 88.0 percent.
Reporting by David Ljunggren; Editing by Chizu Nomiyama