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Economic picture slightly brighter in October

Published by Steve Coleman on November 18, 2011

Canadian economic was a little bit better in October than it was in September, but the numbers were still flat for the month.

Statistics Canada says the composite leading index for the month increase 0.2 per cent in October, doubling the 0.1 per cent growth rate posted for September.

Half of the 10 indicators used to track the economy grew during the month, while four others declined. While household spending remained the strongest measure during the month, manufacturing numbers stayed at the bottom of the pack.

The housing sector rose 1.6 per cent for the month as more housing starts earlier in the year translated into more home sales. Not everyone was looking for furniture to put into their new home, however.

Stats Can says the country experienced a dip in furniture and appliance sales for the month, but the amount of other durable goods increased.

Overall, new manufacturing orders took a 5.5 per cent hit. Fewer companies looking for aircraft helped put the sector into a nose dive.

The ratio of shipments to inventories edged down for the fifth-straight month as larger inventories of finished goods sucked up the rebound in sales for the last two months. In part, Japanese-owned car plants taking possession of parts ordered after this year's earthquake and tsunami dried up the auto parts supply business for six months accounted for a large percentage of the drop in new orders.

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