WASHINGTON, Oct. 14 (UPI) — Manufacturing and trade business inventories rose 0.5 percent in August, ahead of the consensus forecast, the U.S. Commerce Department said Friday.
Economists had expected a 0.3 percent rise.
Inventories rose to $1.53 trillion, a 10.5 percent increase from a year earlier.
Trade sales and manufacturers’ shipments rose 0.3 percent from August to $1.2 trillion. From July 2010, sales and shipments jumped 11.8 percent.
The inventory-sales ratio for manufacturing and trade businesses was 1.28 in August, up from 1.27 in July and down from 1.29 in August 2010.
The ratio indicates how long it would take to sell all inventory at current prices and attempts to indicate whether inventories are rising due to an anticipation of sales or, conversely, a decline in sales that is causing an inventory backlog.