Friday, May 13, 2016


Does it reflect retailers struggle with omnichannel?

Business inventories rise 0.4% in March

Published: May 13, 2016 10:21 a.m. ET

Inventory-to-sales ratio remains at seven-year high

Senior economics reporter
Kevork Djansezian/Bloomberg
A worker at the Littman Brands Troy-CSL Lighting Inc. manufacturing facility in Los Angeles, California
WASHINGTON (MarketWatch) — Inventories at U.S. businesses rose 0.4% in March, the Commerce Department said Friday.
This is the largest increase since last June and above economist’s expectations of a 0.2% gain.
Business sales rose 0.3% in March.
As a result, the inventory-to-sales ratio, an indication of demand, remained steady at 1.41 in March, a seven-year high.
One new piece of information was retail inventories, which jumped 1% in March compared with a 0.3% drop in sales. Excluding autos, retail inventories rose 0.4%.
The inventory-to-sales ratio for retailers, rose to 1.52 in March from 1.50 in February.
Some of this boost in inventories may be reduced by the stronger-than-expected gain in retail sales for April.
Earlier in Friday the government reported that retail sales jumped in April.
Read: Retail sales leap 1.3%, biggest gain in year