Cleaning & Restoration Breaking News

Business Inventories Rise Unexpectedly

July 15, 2002
/ Print / Reprints /
/ Text Size+
WASHINGTON (Reuters) - U.S. business inventories unexpectedly increased in May, posting their first rise in 16 months as sales fell, the government said on Monday.

Inventories at retailers, manufacturers and wholesalers rose 0.2 percent in May after dropping 0.2 percent a month earlier, the Commerce Department said. It was the first rise in business stocks since a matching 0.2 percent gain in January 2001. Wall Street economists had expected inventories to drop 0.1 percent.

The surprise increase came as sales slid 0.4 percent after a strong 1.7 percent gain in April. With sales off and stocks up, the inventories-to-sales ratio -- a measure of how many months it would take to sell off inventories at the current sales pace -- ticked up to 1.36 in May from 1.35 in April.

With stocks-to-sales ratios hovering near historic lows, many economists expect businesses to try to refill depleted shelves. However, a drop in sales is not the businessman's preferred method of boosting inventories.

The largest inventory increase came at the retail level. Retailer's stocks rose 1.0 percent in May as auto inventories rose 2.5 percent and stocks of furniture for sale gained 1.9 percent. Wholesale inventories edged up 0.1 percent, but manufacturing stocks dropped 0.4 percent.

Did you enjoy this article? Click here to subscribe to i Cleaning Specialist Magazine.

You must login or register in order to post a comment.



Image Galleries

The 2014 Experience Conference and Exhibition

A look in photos at the 2014 Experience Conference and Exhibition, which was held from April 24-26 at the Embassy Suites Convention Center and Spa in Frisco, Texas.


Arguably, sending out a client newsletter is the No. 1 key to a reliable cleaning business. In this episode of The Hitman Advertising Show, John Braun covers the true value of mail newsletters, how to send them, how often to send them and more.
More Podcasts

ICS Cleaning Specialist Magazine


2014 October

The October issue of ICS features stories on the 2015 ICE Expo, differentiation, deodorizing, upholstery cleaning, facebook advertising, up-selling, rug cleaning, the rug tour, and cool products.

Table Of Contents Subscribe

Janitorial Work

In addition to residential and commercial carpet cleaning, do you do any janitorial work on the side?
View Results Poll Archive


The Carpet Cleaner's Book of Unlimited Success! (ebook)

Don’t worry about the recession or about your competition.  Now you can be the owner of over 400 ways for carpet cleaning professionals to make more money and get more jobs!

More Products


Director_Buyer.jpgThe premier resource and reference guide for the cleaning and restoration industries.

Click here to view


facebook_40.png twitter_40px.png youtube_40px.pngcrc logo


Truckmount.jpgEquipment listings and specifications from the leading industry manufacturers.

Click here to view