Canada’s GDP continues to rise

OTTAWA (Feb. 1) — Buoyed by continued strength in the United States economy, Canada’s inflation-adjusted gross domestic product (GDP) advanced 0.4% in November, according to Statistics Canada, the fourth consecutive monthly increase.

Seventeen of 22 major industry groups showed increased production, accounting for over 90% of factory output, the agency reported.

The jump was driven in large part by the automotive industry, which continued to recover from a summer swoon induced by strikes at General Motors. Spurred by strong demand in the United States for Canadian-built models, the auto sector improved its robust October performance by 0.3%. Extra shifts and new model launches by other companies also continued to bolster production in November.

However, excluding automotive dealers, all other retailers registered little change in activity in November, continuing the flat performance among retailers since April.

And despite a resurgence in the closing months of 1998, economic growth in the year will fall short of the strong performance in 1997, Statscan said. GDP in the January-to-November period grew 2.8% in 1998, considerably less than the 4.0% growth rate achieved for the same period a year earlier.

The GDP of an industry is the value added by labor and capital in transforming inputs purchased from other producers into outputs.

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