OTTAWA: Canadian retail trade grew less than expected in June, edging up 0.1 percent after three months of solid growth, pulled down by declines in sales of autos and gas, Statistics Canada data indicated on Tuesday. Analysts in a Reuters poll had predicted a 0.3-percent advance in retail trade. Sales rose in six of 11 subsectors, representing 38 percent of total retail trade, to hit a record C$48.99 billion ($38.88 billion).
The Canadian economy has performed strongly this year and last month the Bank of Canada raised rates for the first time in nearly seven years, saying less stimulus was needed. Traders expect another hike in October. Sales at general merchandise stores expanded by 2.9 percent, while clothing and accessories retailers posted a 2.7-percent gain. Sales at building material, garden equipment and supplies dealers rose 2.2 percent. Those increases though were almost wiped out by a 1.4 percent drop in sales at motor vehicle and parts dealers and a 1.8-percent decline in gas station sales. Excluding those two subsectors, retail sales grew by 1.1 percent in June.