Canada’s gross domestic product was essentially unchanged in July, as the services sector expanded slightly while goods-producing industries contracted.
Statistics Canada reported Friday that the total value of Canada’s entire economy was essentially unchanged for the month, with zero per cent growth. Economists had expected a slight expansion of around 0.
The manufacturing sector contracted 1.5 percent, its biggest contraction in more than two years.
Agriculture and forestry, transportation and warehousing, retail trade, and professional services also contracted.
On the positive side of the balance sheet, the biggest source of strength was the mining and oil and gas sector, which recovered after experiencing declines in June due to the wildfires. Mining and quarrying grew 4.2 percent, while oil and gas extraction rose 1.5 percent.
July’s GDP figure was weaker than economists expected, and early indicators for August look similar, with preliminary figures showing a 0.
1 percent expansion. That’s less than the 0.2 percent that was expected.
“The latest data suggests that the third quarter is seeing little to no growth in the economy,” said Royce Mendes, an economist at Desjardins.
“The slowing economy should give central bankers confidence that their medicine is slowly working… As a result, we continue to expect the Bank of Canada to remain on the sidelines for the rest of this year.”