Canada GDP Rises 4.5% in 2Q on Exports, Household Spending

By Paul Vieira Features Dow Jones Newswires

The Canadian economy surged in the second quarter, surpassing already elevated expectations, and recorded its best 12-month run in over a decade, securing its title as the hottest performer so far in 2017 among Group of Seven countries.

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Canada's gross domestic product, or the broadest measure of goods and services produced in an economy, rose at a 4.5% annualized rate in the second quarter to 1.85 trillion Canadian dollars ($1.47 trillion), Statistics Canada said Thursday. This shattered market expectations for a 3.7% increase, according to economists at Royal Bank of Canada, and follows a 3.7% advance in the January-to-March period.

Exports and household spending were the main contributors toward the surprise second-quarter performance.

The data agency said cumulative growth in the first two quarters of 2017 marked the strongest start of a calendar year since 2002, and the second-quarter data marks the best 12-month performance -- 3.7% growth -- for the Canadian economy since 2006, or near the height of the bull run in commodity prices.

The second-quarter result likely cements the likelihood of at least one more rate increase from the Bank of Canada in 2017. Canada's central bank in July raised its benchmark interest rate by a quarter-percentage point to 0.75%, or the first increase since 2010, on the view the economy was approaching full capacity and inflation expected to reach its 2% target within the next year.

Write to Paul Vieira at paul.vieira@wsj.com

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(END) Dow Jones Newswires

August 31, 2017 08:45 ET (12:45 GMT)