01/20/2012 08:50 EST | Updated 03/21/2012 05:12 EDT

Wholesale sales off 0.4 per cent in November: StatsCan

OTTAWA - Statistics Canada says wholesale sales fell 0.4 per cent to $49 billion in November after six consecutive months of increases.

In volume terms, wholesale sales fell 0.8 per cent during the month.

The largest decrease was in the miscellaneous subsector, particularly amongst agricultural supply businesses, with sales down 4.4 per cent to $6.6 billion.

Sales in the motor vehicle and parts subsector fell 1.1 per cent, the first decrease in five months.

The largest increase in dollar terms was recorded in the machinery, equipment and supplies subsector, which gained 1.3 per cent in November.

Wholesale sales fell in six provinces, with Saskatchewan, Quebec and Alberta accounting for most of the national decrease.

The largest decrease was in Saskatchewan, where weakness in the farm supply sector contributed to a 5.0 per cent drop in wholesale sales.

Inventories edged down 0.1 per cent to $57.7 billion in November, the first such decrease in 11 months.