OTTAWA-Canada's trade deficit widened in May as automotive exports fell and aircraft imports from the USA rose sharply.
The May decrease in the goods and services deficit reflected a decrease in the goods deficit of $2.6 billion to $65.8 billion and an increase in the services surplus of $0.5 billion to $22.7 billion.
Imports rose 1.7 per cent in May, after falling a month earlier.
The deficit on goods trade increased to Euro 4.9 billion from Euro 3.9 billion billion.
Exports fell 2.0 percent month-over-month in May, reversing a 2.9 percent increase a month ago. Imports rose 1.7 percent, driven by aircraft and other transportation equipment and energy products. Most of the rise was accounted for by the delivery of several airliners from the United States. "The value of aircraft imports from January to May was a record high for this period". A number of Canadian refineries were temporarily shut down in May.
WRAPUP 1-US job growth seen strong in June, wages picking up
Minutes of the Fed's June 12-13 policy meeting published on Thursday offered an upbeat assessment of the labor market. This means that workers' wages will likely fall behind the rate of inflation, which in May reached 2.8 percent.
The federal agency said total exports edged down 0.1 per cent to $48.3 billion in May, mainly due to lower exports of motor vehicles and parts as well as metal ores and non-metallic minerals.
The United States took 74.2 percent of all Canadian goods exports in May.
Pushed by a 17.7 percent rise in orders of aircraft and other transportation equipment - the fifth consecutive monthly rise for that category - Canadian imports rose 1.7 percent to Can$51.1 billion in May, Statistics Canada said.
Total non-US imports were Can$18.5 billion, with the largest increases coming from China, Belgium and Germany.