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Business Inventories Rise 0.6% in February as Expected

U.S. business inventories rose 0.6 percent in February, in line with Wall Street expectations, while sales dropped the most in more than a year, a government report showed on Monday.

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Bill Haber
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Inventories stood at a seasonally adjusted $1.47 trillion in February, the Commerce Department said.

Commerce also revised January business inventories to show a 0.9 percent rise, compared to a 0.8 percent gain previously reported.

February business sales fell 1.1 percent to $1.14 trillion, the biggest decline since January 2007, when sales also fell 1.1 percent.

The stock-to-sales ratio, which measures how long it would take to empty inventories at the current pace, rose to 1.28 months' worth, the highest since August 2007, when it was also 1.28.

The department also reported retail inventories rose 0.2 percent in February to $502.6 billion, following a 0.3 percent gain in January.

February retail sales fell 0.4 percent to $314.7 billion, led by declines in sales of autos and auto parts and clothing.

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