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Canada’s economy shrank by 0.1% in January, as oil and real estate slumped

Canada’s economy unexpectedly contracted in January, with total output inching down by 0.1 per cent largely because of a slowdown in oil and in real estate.

Statistics Canada reported Thursday that the service sector was flat, while goods-producing industries produced 0.4 per cent less stuff in January than they did in December.

The mining, quarrying and oil-and-gas extraction industry declined by 2.7 per cent during the month, its largest decline since May 2016.

Output from real estate agents and brokers fell 12.8 per cent  in January, the largest monthly decline since November 2008.

New mortgage rules designed to make it harder to get a mortgage came into effect during the month, which caused buyers to rush to buy before the deadline and led to a sharp drop for the month.

The Canadian dollar reacted to the news, losing a third of a cent to 77.35 cents US after the news came out.

CBC | Business News