Wholesale Inventories rise for 2nd month for first time since July/Aug ’08

Feb Wholesale Inventories rose .6%, above expectations of up .4% and Jan was revised up to a gain of .1% from the initial reported decline of .2%. Because sales rose .8%, the inventory to sales ratio did remain unchanged at 1.16. The gain in inventories was led by auto’s and computers in the durable goods space and groceries in the non durable category. The gain in inventories at the wholesale level is now for the 2nd month in a row for the first time since July/Aug ’08 and if followed by a rise in Business Inventories out next week, of which today’s figure is about 25%, it will confirm that we may be seeing the beginning of some inventory stocking after the slowing rate of destocking over the past 6 months.

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