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Wholesale Inventories Rise 1%; Sales Fall

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4/8/2011 10:15:00 AM

Wholesale inventories rose in February while sales fell for the first time in eight months, the Commerce Department said Thursday.

The 1% increase matched January’s gain, which originally had been reported as a 1.1% increase. February’s level matched economists’ forecasts, Bloomberg reported.

Wholesale sales fell 0.8%, the first decline since June, following a 3.3% jump in January that had been the biggest in 18 years.

Factory inventories, which make up about two-fifths of the total, rose 0.8% following a 1.5% increase.

Durable goods inventories rose 0.6%, boosted by metals and automobiles, Bloomberg reported, while the value of unsold non-durable goods rose 1.5% and sales fell 0.4%.

Wholesale inventories account for about a fourth of total business stockpiles, while retailers and factories account for the rest.

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