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For additional information relating to this article, please contact:

Thomas StorringDirector – Economics and Statistics
Tel: 902-424-2410Email: thomas.storring@novascotia.ca

May 20, 2020
WHOLESALE TRADE, MARCH 2020

During the COVID-19 pandemic, comparisons of year-to-date averages and sums do not show Nova Scotia’s rapidly changing economic situation.  The DailyStats will focus on year-over-year comparisons, comparing one month with the same month in the prior year.  Where possible the DailyStats will make comparisons of seasonally adjusted data from the pre-COVID-19 period (January  and February 2020) with the period during which COVID-19 measures were in place from March 2020 onwards.

 

MONTH-OVER-MONTH

 

In Nova Scotia March 2020, on a seasonally adjusted basis

  • month-over-month Wholesale Trade decreased 0.9 per cent $881.7 million over February 2020.
  • year-over-year Wholesale Trade decreased 0.9 per cent over March 2019.

In Canada March 2020, on a seasonally adjusted basis

  • month-over-month Wholesale Trade decreased 2.2 per cent $63.9 billion over February 2020.
  • year-over-year Wholesale Trade decreased 0.3 per cent over March 2019.

 

BY PROVINCE

On a month over month basis, seasonally adjusted Wholesale Trade was down 2.2 per cent nationally. Four provinces reported monthly increases in wholesale trade, with Prince Edward Island (6.5 per cent) reporting the largest gain in percentage terms. Nova Scotia reported a decline (0.9 per cent) over the previous month.  British Columbia reported the largest decline  (3.6 per cent) over the previous month.

 

On a year-over-year basis, seasonally adjusted Wholesale Trade was down 0.3 per cent nationally. Four provinces reported year-over-year increases in wholesale trade, with Prince Edward Island (14.8 per cent)  reporting the  largest gain  in percentage terms. Nova Scotia reported a decline (0.9 per cent)  over the previous year.  Compared to March 2019 Newfoundland and Labrador  reported the largest decline  (6.8 per cent).

 

  

NOVA SCOTIA SECTORS

Year-Over-Year

 

Nova Scotia (Mar 2020 vs Mar 2019), Total wholesale trade year-over-year decreased 0.9 per cent  ($7.9  million) over the same month last year.

  • Food, beverage with a 34% share of Wholesale Trade decreased 3.9 per cent  (-$12.0  million).
  • Motor vehicle and parts with a 19% share increased 10.4 per cent  ($15.4  million).
  • Building material with a 19% share decreased 4.6 per cent  (-$8.0  million).
  • Machinery, equipment with a 15% share decreased 13.4 per cent  (-$19.9  million).
  • Miscellaneous wholesalers with a 9% share increased 35.3 per cent  ($21.1  million).
  • Other wholesalers with a 6% share decreased 8.6 per cent  (-$4.6  million).

 

 

 

WHOLESALE INVENTORIES

"In terms of inventories, wholesalers reported an estimated reduction of $2.5 billion (unadjusted) because of COVID-19. Stock in the motor vehicle and motor vehicle parts and accessories subsector was drawn down by $1.3 billion in March, the largest reported decline." Statistics Canada

 

 

STATISTICS CANADA QUOTES

COVID-19 in March

"Feedback from respondents highlighted the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on sales and inventories in March 2020.

  • Over three-quarters (75.9%) of wholesalers saw their business activity impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic.
  • Respondents reported that the COVID-19 pandemic caused sales to lower by $6.2 billion (unadjusted) in March. In dollar value, the motor vehicle and motor vehicle parts and accessories subsector were the most impacted by COVID-19, with an estimated $2.3 billion (unadjusted) loss in sales.
  • About four-fifths of the respondents in the motor vehicle and motor vehicle parts and accessories subsector reported the second-highest levels of business disruptions from COVID-19, led by the used motor vehicle parts and accessories industry (84.1%). These businesses noted that the impact to their sales was caused by the closure of non-essential operations.
  • The pharmaceuticals and pharmacy supplies industry reported that 43.7% of businesses were affected by COVID-19. Many of these businesses were impacted positively."

 

Reference Tables

20-10-0074-01 Seasonally adjusted Wholesale sales by province 

20-10-0074-01 Nova Scotia seasonally adjusted Wholesale trade by NAICS sectors

20-10-0076-01 Canada seasonally adjusted Wholesale Trade Inventory

 

Citations

Statistics Canada. Table 20-10-0074-01 Wholesale trade, sales (x 1,000) 

Statistics Canada. Table 20-10-0076-01 Wholesale Trade Inventories (x 1,000)



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