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Wholesale Services Price Index, second quarter 2015

Released: 2015-11-18

The Wholesale Services Price Index (WSPI) increased 0.4% in the second quarter, offsetting the decrease in the previous quarter. The increase in the second quarter was the result of small but widespread margin increases among six of the eight major wholesale sectors.

Chart 1  Chart 1: Wholesale Services Price Index
Wholesale Services Price Index

The largest increase in the second quarter was posted by petroleum and petroleum product merchant wholesalers (+2.4%). Higher margins for gasoline, diesel and aviation fuel more than offset the decrease in the first quarter.

The second largest increase was recorded by wholesalers of building material and supplies (+1.5%). Higher margins in May offset decreases in April and June. Plumbing, heating and air-conditioning equipment and supplies led the increase (+7.4%), followed closely by paint, glass and wallpaper products (+7.2%).

Margin increases were also reported by wholesalers of personal and household goods (+1.0%), food, beverage and tobacco products (+1.0%), motor vehicles, parts and accessories (+0.4%) as well as machinery, equipment and supplies (+0.3%).

Moderating the increase in the WSPI were margin declines by wholesalers of farm products (-6.1%) and miscellaneous products (-1.5%).

Year-over-year change

Year over year, the WSPI advanced 1.0% in the second quarter.

Wholesalers of petroleum and petroleum products (+5.4%) posted the largest year-over-year increase in the second quarter. This was the 11th consecutive year-over-year increase for the sector.

The second largest increase was recorded by wholesalers of building material and supplies (+5.0%), a fifth consecutive year-over-year increase. Higher margins for plumbing, heating and air-conditioning equipment and supplies (+12.0%), other specialty-line building supplies (+10.8%) and electrical wiring and construction supplies (+8.6%) were behind the increase.

Wholesalers of food, beverage and tobacco products (+4.0%) also contributed to the year-over-year gain.

Year-over-year margin declines were reported for wholesalers of farm products (-9.5%), machinery, equipment and supplies (-1.2%), motor vehicles and parts (-1.0%), miscellaneous products (-0.6%) and personal and household goods (-0.1%).


  Note to readers

The Wholesale Services Price Index (WSPI) represents the change in the price of the wholesale service. The price of the wholesale service is defined as the margin price, which is the difference between the average purchase price and the average selling price of the wholesale product being priced. The WSPI is not a wholesale selling price index.

With each release, data for the previous quarter may have been revised. The series are also subject to an annual revision with the release of second quarter data of the following reference year. The indexes are not seasonally adjusted. Data are available at the Canada level only. Beginning in the fourth quarter of 2014, the data collection mode changed as the data were collected through an online electronic questionnaire instead of paper.

Next release

The WSPI for the third quarter of 2015 will be released in February 2016.

Contact information

For more information, or to enquire about the concepts, methods or data quality of this release, contact us (toll-free 1-800-263-1136; 514-283-8300; STATCAN.infostats-infostats.STATCAN@canada.ca) or Media Relations (613-951-4636; STATCAN.mediahotline-ligneinfomedias.STATCAN@canada.ca).

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