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Wholesale trade declines again due to weaker vehicle and parts sales

August 21, 2018   Don Horne

Canadian wholesale trade decreased by 0.8 per cent in June from May, the second decline in three months, led by weaker sales in the motor vehicles and parts subsector, Statistics Canada said.

Sales were down in five out of seven subsectors, representing 71 per cent of wholesale trade, while sales fell in eight of the 10 provinces. Sales decreased 1.1 per cent in volume terms.

The motor vehicle and parts subsector fell 1.9 per cent, mostly due to lower sales in the motor vehicle industry, which fell 2.4 per cent. It was the third straight decline for the subsector.

Sales in the miscellaneous subsector fell 2.2 per cent as agricultural supplies saw an 8.8 per cent drop, while the machinery, equipment and supplies subsector fell 0.6 per cent.


Sales in the building material and supplies subsector edged up 0.4 per cent.

Inventories rose for the fourth consecutive month, up 1.8 per cent and in five of seven subsectors, representing 85 per cent of total wholesale inventories, the report showed.

The inventory-to-sales ratio increased from 1.33 in May to 1.36 in June, the highest since May 2009.


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