NEWS

Canadian economic output goes flat in February

04/30/2015 08:58 EDT | Updated 08/07/2015 07:59 EDT
Canada's economy didn't grow in February, rebounding only slightly from a 0.2 per cent decline in January.

Statistics Canada reported Thursday that the service sector increased by a small amount, but that was more than offset by a contraction in goods-producing industries.

The data agency also revised its numbers to show that January's results were a worse showing than previously thought. Initially, Statistics Canada said the economy contracted by 0.1 per cent during the month. Thursday's release updated that to a 0.2 per cent decline.

Two of Canada's most closely watched industries — manufacturing and the energy sector — both shrank during the month. The financial and insurance sectors both expanded, as did real estate.

Retail and utilities were sources of strength.

"Falling oil prices are showing up in the data," is how Scotiabank described the showing, although the bank added it doubts that Thursday's data changes the Bank of Canada's outlook in any big way, since the central bank was already pretty bleak on the first quarter, and banking on a rebound later in the year.

"The central bank has already written-off Q1, and is now focused on the depth and length of the lower oil price impact into the rest of 2015," Scotiabank said.

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