Real gross domestic product (GDP) fell 0.6% in May, the largest monthly decline since March 2009. The decrease in May was primarily due to lower non-conventional oil extraction, a consequence of the Fort McMurray wildfire and evacuation.
The Fort McMurray wildfire was the main cause behind a 2.8% decline in the output of goods-producing industries. The mining, quarrying, and oil and gas extraction sector fell 6.4%, as the output of the non-conventional oil extraction industry recorded a 22% drop. Following an 8.1% decrease in April due to maintenance shutdowns at upgrader facilities, the output level in May for this industry was the lowest since May 2011.
Excluding the decline in the non-conventional oil extraction industry, real GDP edged down 0.1% in May. There was little evidence that the Fort McMurray wildfire significantly affected other industries at the national level. Therefore, the difference between the overall 0.6% decline in GDP and the 0.1% decrease in GDP excluding the non-conventional oil and gas industry is an approximation of the direct impact that the Fort McMurray wildfire had on overall growth in May.
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