The U.S. Census Bureau said business inventories rose 0.6% in February for a second straight month in February. That compares to a 3Q average monthly build of 0.3%, indicating business inventories will be a big contributor to first-quarter (1Q) gross domestic product (GDP).
The combined value of distributive trade sales and manufacturers’ shipments for February, adjusted for seasonal and trading-day differences but not for price changes, was estimated at $1,430.4 billion, up 0.4% (±0.2%) from January 2018 and was up 5.8% (±0.3%) from February 2017
Manufacturers’ and trade inventories, adjusted for seasonal variations but not for price changes, were estimated at an end-of-month level of $1,928.8 billion, up 0.6% (±0.1%) from January 2018 and were up 4.0% (±0.3%) from February 2017.
The total business inventories/sales ratio based on seasonally adjusted data at the end of February was 1.35. The February 2017 ratio was 1.37