By Paul Vieira

OTTAWA--Wholesale sales in Canada rebounded in October with a solid gain that beat expectations and partly offset the previous month's decline, led by strength in building materials and motor vehicles.

Wholesale sales advanced 1.1% on a seasonally-adjusted basis in October to 56.63 billion Canadian dollars ($42.20 billion), Statistics Canada said Tuesday. Expectations were for a 0.5% advance, according to economists at Royal Bank of Canada.

September's data were downgraded, and now indicate sales fell 1.5%. The original estimate showed a 1.2% decline.

In volume terms, October's wholesale sales rose 0.9%.

Wholesale trade is the largest component of Canada's services sector -- which in turn accounts for two-thirds of the country's economic output. Wholesalers tend to move merchandise in large quantities to institutional, industrial and retail clients.

On a 12-month basis, wholesale sales rose 3.9% in October.

Five of the seven components tracked rose in the month, led by a 2.8% gain in building materials. Meanwhile, motor vehicle shipments gained 1.2% to C$8.96 billion to hit a record level. Excluding the auto sector, wholesale trade rose 0.9% in October.

Inventories rose 0.8% to C$72.90 billion in October from September, and 0.1% on a year-over-year basis.

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

(END) Dow Jones Newswires

December 20, 2016 08:45 ET (13:45 GMT)

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