August 21, 2017 / 12:47 PM / 4 months ago

UPDATE 1-Canada wholesale trade drops for first time in nine months

(Adds data, background)

OTTAWA, Aug 21 (Reuters) - The value of Canadian wholesale trade fell by 0.5 percent in June after eight consecutive monthly increases, largely pulled down by lower sales of food and motor vehicles, Statistics Canada said on Monday.

The decrease was greater than the 0.2 percent drop forecast by analysts in a Reuters poll. Five of the seven subsectors posted declines.

In volume terms, sales edged down by 0.7 percent.

The food, beverage and tobacco subsector fell by 1.0 percent, while motor vehicles and parts dealers also saw trade slip by 1.0 percent.

Sales in the western energy-producing province of Alberta, still coming to grips with a prolonged period of low oil prices, declined 3.7 percent, the first decrease in nine months.

Inventories posted their 10th gain in 11 months, rising 0.6 percent to reach a record high on the back of a 3.2 percent increase in the personal and household goods subsector.

Reporting by David Ljunggren; Editing by W Simon

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