Estimated read time: Less than a minute
This archived news story is available only for your personal, non-commercial use. Information in the story may be outdated or superseded by additional information. Reading or replaying the story in its archived form does not constitute a republication of the story.
WASHINGTON (AP) — U.S. wholesale businesses trimmed their stockpiles for the second straight month in November, while their sales plunged by the largest amount in 10 months.
The Commerce Department says wholesale inventories fell 0.3 percent in November following a similar 0.3 percent drop in October. Sales plunged 1 percent, which was the biggest setback since January.
Economists are hoping that continued strong job gains will boost consumer spending and businesses will respond by restocking their empty shelves in coming months. They believe that slower inventory growth in the October-December period held back economic growth in the fourth quarter
JPMorgan Chase economists forecast the economy grew at a moderate 2 percent rate in the fourth quarter, with weaker inventory rebuilding cutting growth by about 0.3 percentage point.
Copyright © The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.