News Column

Wholesale Sales and Inventories up in April

June 11, 2013

Staff Reports --


U.S. wholesale inventories bobbled up by 0.2 percent in April to $504.8 billion, while sales were up 0.5 percent at $416.6 billion, the Commerce Department said Tuesday.

Sales of merchant wholesalers after adjustments were $416.6 billion, up 0.5 percent from the revised March figure, and up 0.7 percent compared to April 2012. The preliminary March estimate was revised downward $700 million, or 0.2 percent.

Sales of durable goods were up 1.6 percent in April from the prior month and up 4.2 percent year over year. Sales of furniture and home furnishings, machinery, equipment and supplies were all up, but clothing, piece goods and notions were down. Petroleum and petroleum products were down as well, at 2.7 percent.

Inventories of merchant wholesalers were adjusted for seasonal variation but not price changes. Inventories of motor vehicles and parts were up 0.2 percent month to month and up 5.9 percent year over year. Metal and mineral inventories were down 1.1 percent for the month, nondurable goods were up 0.1 percent, and alcoholic beverages were up 2.3 percent.

The inventories-to-sales ratio for merchant wholesalers was 1.21, up from the April 2012 ratio of 1.17.

The full report is available at the Commerce Department (PDF).

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