US businesses increase stockpiles 01 percent in March

first_img WASHINGTON (AP) — U.S. businesses increased their stockpiles slightly in March, as sales picked up for the first time since July.The Commerce Department said Wednesday that business stockpiles rose 0.1 percent in March after a 0.2 percent gain in February. Sales rose 0.4 percent in March, ending seven straight months of declines or no gains. Over the past 12 months, sales have fallen 2.1 percent.The inventories reflect expectations by business of future customer demand, possibly signaling whether the economy is strengthening or weakening. Ex-FBI agent details raid on Phoenix body donation facility Former Arizona Rep. Don Shooter shows health improvement Top Stories New Valley school lets students pick career-path academies Milstead says best way to stop wrong-way incidents is driving sober Sponsored Stories Comments   Share   The vital role family plays in society Economic growth has basically stalled during the first three months of the year. Gross domestic product increased at an annual rate of only 0.2 percent during the first quarter.But the modest increase in business inventories, coupled with other lukewarm indicators, led the bank Barclays to project that revisions will show the economy actually shrank at a 0.8 percent rate at the start of 2015.Economists forecast that growth should rebound in the coming months as the impacts from a harsh winter and a stronger dollar begin to fade.There are signs that the economy is starting to heat up. Employers added 223,000 jobs in April, a strong rebound after gains totaled a mere 85,000 in March, the Labor Department said Friday.But a separate report released Wednesday showed that additional hiring hasn’t fueled retail sales growth. The Commerce Department said that retail spending was unchanged between April and March, a sign that factors beyond the harsh winter may be weighing on the economy because the anticipated spring upswing has failed to appear.Copyright © The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed. In this March 31, 2015 photo, pallets of lumber are moved at the Allegheny Millwork and Lumberyard in Pittsburgh. The Commerce Department releases business inventories for March on Wednesday, May 13, 2015. (AP Photo/Gene J. Puskar) 4 sleep positions for men and what they mean How men can have a healthy 2019last_img read more

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