Canadian manufacturing sales have fallen for 4 out of the last five months having peaked in May.  

This follows hot on the heels of an initial slow third quarter GDP estimate, led by declines in exports and business capital investment: real GDP grew by .14%.  If we deduct the rise in inventories, which in a slowing economy are more likely to be drawn down, growth would have been negative by a similar amount.  Manufacturing inventories and inventory to sales ratios are on an upward trend and showed a particularly significant increase in October.  

I am still waiting for more detail on the GDP figures, but with very high personal debt to GDP ratios, a slowing housing market and weak global growth, we should not expect too much.  What will be interesting is to see how much residential construction contributed in the third quarter, given the still considerable amount of condo development going on.

November data for housing starts shows a further fall in starts, continuing on from declines in September and October. 

Trade data for October shows a 1% rebound in exports, but a sharp decline in imports: in Q3 data consumer demand had expanded at a rate well above previous quarters, yet exports fell.  Perhaps a weakening in private consumption expenditure, housing and and manufacturing sales will be offset by by an improvement in net exports for Q4.

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