Wholesale Inventories Up 0.6 Percent

Wholesale inventories rose 0.6 percent in December, the Commerce Department reported, the biggest jump in a year, as companies sought to build stockpiles to keep up with accelerating sales in an expanding economy.

The increase in inventories, to $294.5 billion, was led by autos and petroleum. It came after a 0.5 percent gain in November.

Sales climbed 1 percent after a 0.6 percent rise in November, the Commerce Department said. Inventories relative to sales dropped to 1.17 mon

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