June 15, 2017 / 12:38 PM / 6 months ago

Canadian factory sales rise to record in April on petroleum, coal

OTTAWA (Reuters) - Canadian manufacturing sales rose more than expected to a record level in April as sales of petroleum and coal products rebounded after two months of declines, data from Statistics Canada showed on Thursday.

An oil rig drills near the Suncor Firebag in-situ oil sands operations near Fort McMurray, Alberta, September 17, 2014. REUTERS/Todd Korol

Sales grew 1.1 percent to C$54.43 billion ($41.01 billion), topping economists’ forecast for a gain of 0.7 percent. March was revised downward to show an increase of 0.8 percent from an initially reported 1 percent.

Sales were up in 13 of the 21 sectors surveyed, accounting for 62 percent of overall manufacturing. Stripping out the effects of price changes, sales volumes were up 0.5 percent.

The petroleum and coal products sector led the way with an 8.9 percent surge on both higher volumes and prices.

Among other sectors that saw higher sales in April, the primary metal industry was up 3.8 percent, while the paper sector gained 3.5 percent.

Sales of transportation equipment fell 1.3 percent, mostly due to lower sales of motor vehicles and parts. Excluding autos, total manufacturing sales were up 1.9 percent.

Reporting by Leah Schnurr; Editing by Bernadette Baum

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