07/15/2015 09:32 EDT | Updated 07/15/2016 01:12 EDT

Factory sales post modest rise in May, volumes down despite weak dollar

TORONTO — The value of Canadian manufacturing sales edged up 0.1 per cent in May as aerospace parts and petroleum and coal products posted gains, according to Statistics Canada data released on Wednesday.

Despite the weak dollar making Canadian exports more attractive, the volume of manufactured goods sold in the month fell 0.5 per cent.

The aerospace industry is highly volatile, and the increase partly reflects the change in the value of the Canadian dollar as aerospace sales and inventories are reported in American currency.

Sales of petroleum and coal products rose 5.6 per cent in the month on higher prices, up 14 per cent from a low in January.

Sales rose in six of the 21 sectors that are part of Statistics Canada's monthly survey of manufacturing, representing almost half of Canada's manufacturing output.

Gains in Quebec, which was boosted by the aerospace industry, were offset by declines in Ontario, which was pulled lower by declines in multiple industries, including transportation, chemical products, machinery, and computer products.

Inventories fell 0.5 per cent, following two consecutive months of gains, reflecting lower inventories in the petroleum and coal industries.

Peter Henderson, The Canadian Press