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U.S. Business Inventories Climb In Line With Estimates In December

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Business inventories in the U.S. increased in line with economist estimates in the month of December, according to a report released by the Commerce Department on Monday.

The report said business inventories climbed by 0.6 percent in December, while revised data showed inventories were unchanged in November.

Economists had expected inventories to increase by 0.6 percent compared to the 0.1 percent uptick originally reported for the previous month.

Wholesale and retail inventories jumped by 1.1 percent and 0.9 percent, respectively, while manufacturing inventories were unchanged.

Meanwhile, the Commerce Department said business sales tumbled by 1.0 percent in December after falling by 0.6 percent in November.

Retail sales plunged by 1.8 percent, wholesale sales slumped by 1.0 percent and manufacturing sales dipped by 0.2 percent.

With inventories rising and sales falling, the total business inventories/sales ratio edged up to 1.38 in December from 1.36 in November.

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