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Canadian Factory Shipments Rise to Highest in Almost Two Years

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Jan. 21 (Bloomberg) -- Canadian factory sales rose to the highest in almost two years in November led by automobiles and aircraft.

Sales climbed 1 percent to C$50.5 billion ($45.9 billion), Statistics Canada said today in Ottawa. The increase exceeded all 15 forecasts in a Bloomberg News economist survey with a median prediction of a 0.3 percent rise.

The sixth gain in seven months may signal the end of a period of stagnation that began in 2011 and featured inconsistent global demand and a Canadian dollar trading close to parity with its U.S. counterpart. The Bank of Canada has said business investment and exports remain weak in an economy led by consumer spending, as companies say they’re holding back until clearer signs of a global expansion emerge.

Motor vehicle sales rose 5 percent to a six-year high of C$4.8 billion and up from a January 2009 low of C$1.6 billion, Statistics Canada said. Aerospace sales rose 21 percent to C$1.8 billion.

Sales rose in 11 of 21 categories tracked by Statistics Canada, accounting for 58 percent of production.

Excluding price changes, a better indicator of the industry’s contribution to economic growth, factory sales rose 0.7 percent.

Unfilled orders increased 0.4 percent to C$72.2 billion, and new orders gained 1.2 percent to C$50.8 billion in November.

Inventories rose 0.2 percent to C$69.3 billion, with the ratio of factory stockpiles to sales falling to 1.37 from 1.38.

To contact the reporter on this story: Greg Quinn in Ottawa at gquinn1@bloomberg.net

To contact the editors responsible for this story: Paul Badertscher at pbadertscher@bloomberg.net

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