US business inventories rose modestly in June; sales climbed | iNFOnews | Thompson-Okanagan's News Source

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US business inventories rose modestly in June; sales climbed

In this Thursday, March 24, 2016, photo, Gabe Sandoval places a bottle of Cathead Vodka in a case at their Jackson, Miss., plant. On Friday, Aug. 12, 2016, the Commerce Department reports on business inventories during June. (AP Photo/Rogelio V. Solis)
August 12, 2016 - 7:20 AM

U.S. businesses increased their inventories modestly in June, as retailers continued to stock up. But factories reduced stockpiles for the 12th straight month.

The Commerce Department said overall business inventories rose 0.2 per cent in June, same as in May. Business sales shot up 1.2 per cent in June, biggest jump since February 2013.

Retailers recorded a 0.9 per cent rise in sales and increased stockpiles by 0.5 per cent for the second consecutive month. Auto dealers increased inventories by 0.9 per cent from May and 10.9 per cent from June 2015. But manufacturers cut inventories by 0.1 per cent from May and by 3.7 per cent from June 2015.

Factories have been hurt by weak global demand and a strong dollar that makes their goods costlier overseas. Retailers were helped by strong consumer demand in the spring: Consumer spending rose at a healthy 4.2 per cent annual rate from April through June.

Overall, a slowdown in restocking empty shelves has dragged down economic growth for five straight quarters. The U.S. economy expanded at a lacklustre 1.2 per cent annual pace in the second quarter.

News from © The Associated Press, 2016
The Associated Press

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