Inventories at U.S. companies were little changed in June as sales improved, signaling manufacturers will be growing orders.
Stockpiles held at around $1.66 billion after dropping 0.1 percent in May, the Commerce Department reported today in Washington. The median estimate in a Bloomberg survey projected a 0.2 percent advance. Sales rose 0.2 percent in June.
Companies may gain confidence to replenish stockpiles as consumer demand for housing, automobiles and clothing improves. Merchants had enough goods on hand in June to last 1.29 months at the current sales pace, matching the previous month. The last time the ratio was lower was a year ago.