U.S. business inventories plunge record 1.5 percent


U.S. businesses continue to reduce excess inventory as they cut costs and re-align their operations with consumer demand: business inventories plunged a record 1.5 percent in August, the U.S. Commerce Department announced Wednesday, led by a decline in retail and auto inventories.

The 1.5 percent August inventory decline ties a 17-year record dip. Business inventories also declined 1.5 percent in December 2008 and in October 2001.