The last economic report for Friday was the Wholesale Inventories reading for June. It turns out that inventories rose by only 0.3% for the month. Bloomberg and Dow Jones both had the consensus estimate at a gain of 0.7%. This put the inventories reading up at $533.5 billion.
While the gain was lower than expected on a month over month reading, the inventories level was up by 7.9% from the prior year. Another knock here was that the gain of 0.5% in May was revised lower — down to a gain of only 0.3%.
The Census Bureau report showed that sales were $454.4 billion. June durables were up 1.4% from the prior month but up 6.6% from a year ago. Sales of non-durables were down 0.7% from the prior month, but they too were up by 6.5% from a year ago. Interestingly enough, sales of farm product raw materials were down by a sharp 8.1% from the prior month.
The so-called Inventory/Sales Ratio, a key view by economic watchers, was 1.17 - versus 1.16 in June of 2013.
Wholesale trade is released monthly by the Census and aims to measure the total dollar value of sales made and inventories held by merchant wholesalers. This report is generally not a market moving report, but two weaker than expected readings (June lower than estimates, and May revised lower) does at least bring up some concern that merchants are not stocking up their shelves in preparation for a rush of business.
Filed under: Economy