Sales of fabricated metal products in Canada rose 3.7% this January, continuing to the lead the way in the economic recovery, Statistics Canada records show.
Compared to January of last year, fabricated metal products sales were up 21.1%.
It’s a mixed picture, however, for other sectors related to metalworking. Following three consecutive monthly gains, sales of primary metals fell 5.0% to $5.5 billion in January on lower sales of non-ferrous metals (except aluminum) and iron and steel mills and ferro-alloy products. Nevertheless, sales of primary metals stood 24.0% higher compared with January 2021.
Likewise, sales of durable goods fell 0.8% in January compared to the previous month but were still 5% ahead of the sales posted in January of the previous year.
The January sales numbers were not good, however, in two key sector for Canadian job shops: automotive and aerospace.
Aerospace products and parts sales declined 2.4% in January while sales of motor vehicles fell 17.5% to $3.0 billion in January, following three consecutive monthly increases. Meanwhile, sales of motor vehicle parts were down 7.1%. Several motor vehicle assembly plants experienced production shutdowns in January due to supply chain disruptions and semiconductor shortages. The capacity utilization rate of the motor vehicle industry dropped accordingly. Sales of motor vehicles were down 20.4% year over year and exports of motor vehicles and parts fell 9.6% in January.