indicatorThe Owl

Manufacturing sales surge in January

After posting two monthly declines, Alberta’s factories and refineries saw their seasonally adjusted sales rise in January by 5.2 per cent.

By 17 March 2020 1 min read

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After posting two monthly declines, Alberta’s factories and refineries saw their seasonally adjusted sales rise in January by 5.2 per cent. On a year-over-year basis, however, sales growth was essentially flat, rising by just 0.03 per cent.

Of our three largest manufacturing subsectors, food processing posted the largest monthly gain in January at 10.7 per cent. Petroleum refinery sales were up slightly (+0.9 per cent) while chemical manufacturing sales contracted by 2.2 per cent.

We won’t start to see what the impact of COVID-19 and the oil price war will be on Alberta’s manufacturing sector until we get data for February and March. Going forward, lower oil prices will push down the value of sales from Alberta’s petroleum refineries. 

We will also likely see reduced demand for some products as the economy slows domestically and around the world. Virus containment efforts might also cut into the availability of workers and, in turn, dampen output to some degree.

Nationally, sales were down 0.2% in January. This was the fifth consecutive monthly decline.

Alberta monthly manufacturing sales

Up by just 0.03 per cent, sales growth compared to last January is essentially flat.


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