OTTAWA—Statistics Canada says wholesale sales increased 0.2 per cent to $53.1 billion in August.
The federal agency says gains in three subsectors—especially in machinery, equipment and supplies—more than offset declines elsewhere.
Economists had expected a loss of 0.2 per cent, according to Thomson Reuters.
Wholesale sales rose 1.0 per cent when the motor vehicle and parts subsector—which had the largest drop—was excluded.
In volume terms, wholesale sales edged up 0.1 per cent.
Statistics Canada says sales rose in four provinces in August, which together represented two-thirds of wholesale sales in Canada, with Ontario accounting for much of the gain.