Canada’s economy grows 2.5 percent in 2011


Ottawa : Canada’s economy grew 2.5 percent in 2011, down from 3.2 percent in the previous year, but it is much better than the economists’ estimates a few months ago, and also slightly higher than the central bank’s prediction in January, Statistics Canada announced.

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All major industrial sectors rose in 2011, with mining and oil and gas extraction, construction, the public sector, and manufacturing being the main contributors to overall growth, the agency said Friday.

The agency also said that business investment in plant and equipment contributed the most to GDP growth in 2011, reported Xinhua.

The pace of housing investment slowed to 2.3 percent in 2011 from 10.2 percent in 2010.

Growth in Canadian exports and imports both slowed in 2011, and the growth pace for consumer spending also slowed down.

In the fourth quarter of 2011, the growth rate of the economy slowed to 0.4 percent from 1.0 percent in the third quarter, and at an annual rate of 1.8 percent and 4.2 percent respectively.

The annualized rate was consistent with the economists’ expectation, and the consumption growth and business investment were stronger than expected.

Consumer spending on goods and services expanded 0.7 percent in the fourth quarter, up from the 0.4 percent gain in the previous quarter.

Business investment in plant and equipment advanced 2.0 percent, the eighth consecutive quarterly increase.

Housing investment slowed to 0.8 percent in the fourth quarter, well below the 2.5 percent increase in the previous quarter.