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Canada’s Trade Deficit Shrinks in June on Export Rebound

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Aug. 6 (Bloomberg) -- Canada’s trade deficit narrowed in June as exports rebounded from a two-month slump, led by shipments of cars and aircraft.

The nation’s trade gap was C$469 million ($453 million) during the month, down from a revised C$781 million in May, Statistics Canada said today in Ottawa. Economists surveyed by Bloomberg forecast the June deficit would be C$510 million, the median of 20 responses.

Canada’s economy is being weighed down by what the Bank of Canada calls the slowest export recovery since World War II. The May trade gap was the 18th in a row and extends the longest streak of deficits in a quarter century. The agency today also revised the past three monthly merchandise trade balances to show wider deficits. The gap in May was initially reported at C$303 million.

The data suggest “trade was a very slight drag on gross domestic product growth last quarter,” Doug Porter, chief economist at Bank of Montreal, said in a note to investors.

The Canadian dollar depreciated 0.3 percent to C$1.0389 per U.S. dollar at 10:05 p.m. in Toronto.

Canada’s economy probably grew by an annualized 1.6 percent in the second quarter, according to the median estimate of economists surveyed by Bloomberg News earlier, down from a 2.5 percent pace in the first quarter.

Planes, Automobiles

Exports rose 1.4 percent to C$39.6 billion in June, after falling 2.5 percent in the previous two months. Aircraft and other transportation equipment rose 24 percent to C$1.72 billion, while motor vehicle shipments were up 5.5 percent to C$5.79 billion. Shipments abroad of energy products declined 1.4 percent to C$8.73 billion.

Imports rose 0.6 percent to C$40.0 billion, as energy-product shipments into Canada surged 20 percent to C$3.83 billion, the statistics agency said.

The volume of exports rose 2.1 percent and import volumes fell 0.5 percent, Statistics Canada said. Volume figures adjust for price changes and can be a better indicator of how trade contributes to economic growth.

To contact the reporter on this story: Theophilos Argitis in Ottawa at targitis@bloomberg.net

To contact the editors responsible for this story: Chris Wellisz at cwellisz@bloomberg.net; David Scanlan at dscanlan@bloomberg.net

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