Wholesale Inventories Rise Modestly in September

Construction Supplies At Maze Lumber Ahead of Business Inventories Data
Daniel Acker/Bloomberg via Getty Images

By Jason Lange

WASHINGTON -- U.S. wholesale inventories rose more that expected in September but the government revised downward its initial estimates for growth in stocks during August, which suggests little impact on current views of economic growth in the third quarter.

The Commerce Department said Wednesday wholesale inventories increased 0.3 percent during the month after a 0.6 percent gain in August.

%VIRTUAL-WSSCourseInline-876%Economists polled by Reuters had expected a 0.2 percent increase in September.

Inventories are a key component of gross domestic product changes. The component that goes into the calculation of GDP -- wholesale stocks excluding autos -- increased 0.1 percent.

Sales at wholesalers rose 0.2 percent in September, more than the 0.1 percent increase predicted by economists. At September's sales pace it would take 1.19 months to clear shelves, unchanged from August.

Sales had fallen 0.8 percent in August.

A slowdown in the pace of restocking by businesses held back stronger economic growth in the third quarter, though gross domestic product still expanded a robust 3.5 percent during the three-month period.

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