Statistics Canada (StatsCan) reported on Thursday (4-14-22) that wholesale sales declined for the first time in seven months. According to the report, wholesale sales declined a modest -0.4% in February to $78.8 billion (CAD). Leading the decline were lower sales in personal and household goods, building materials and supplies, motor vehicles, and motor vehicle accessories and parts, while sale in all other subsectors increased. At the same time, the volume of wholesale goods sold declined -1.4% in February.
Building material and supplies wholesalers recorded a 2.8% drop in sales to $13.7 billion as activity in the subsector was slower than normal in February. While the price of softwood lumber (the largest component of the subsector) increased and exports grew modestly, overall sales were lower. The decline reflected lower sales among small and medium sized wholesalers in the subsector, as larger companies reported increases.
Partially offsetting the February decrease was a 2.8% rise in sales of machinery equipment and supplies, the sixth consecutive increase in the subsector and the highest level of sales ever recorded. Sales increases in the subsector were led by the other machinery and equipment industry (in particular sales of professional machinery, equipment, and supplies) and the computer and electronic product industry.
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