U.S. Wholesale Inventories Rise More Than Expected In December

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Wholesale inventories in the U.S. increased by more than expected in the month of December, according to a report released by the Commerce Department on Wednesday.

The Commerce Department said wholesale inventories rose by 0.3 percent in December after coming in virtually unchanged in November. Economists had expected inventories to inch up by 0.1 percent.

The bigger than expected increase in wholesale inventories came as inventories non-durable goods climbed by 0.6 percent, while inventories of durable goods crept up by 0.1 percent.

The report also said wholesale sales surged up by 1.2 percent in December after rising by 0.3 percent in the previous month.

Sales of durable goods spiked by 2.1 percent during the month, while sales of durable goods increased by 0.4 percent.

With sales jumping by much more than inventories, the inventories/sales ratio for merchant wholesalers dipped to 1.29 in December from 1.31 in November.

Next Wednesday, the Commerce Department is scheduled to release a separate report on business inventories in the month of December. Economists currently expect inventories to rise by 0.4 percent.


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