Indicator 8 – Manufacturing and Trade

6 Nov

Manufacturing and Trade Inventories and Sales (MTIS) data represents the combined value of sales and shipments by manufacturers in a specific month; as well as the combined values of inventories in the wholesale and retail business sectors and manufacturing. The current and most recent past month’s inventory/sales ratios are also provided.

Information is provided across 17,000 manufacturing, retail and wholesale companies within 160 industries.

This data set is the primary source of information on the state of business inventories and business sales. Inventory rates often provide clues about the growth or contraction of the economy. A growth in business inventories may mean sales are slow and the economy’s rate of growth is also slowing. If sales are slowing, businesses may be forced to cut production of goods, and that can eventually translate into inventory reductions. Consider the chart below; and the relationship between the spike in inventories/sales ratio and the overall economy at the time.

On October 29, 2013, the U.S. Department of Commerce’s U.S. Census Bureau released the August 2013 Manufacturing and Trade Inventories and Sales report. The report showed:

Sales: the combined value of distributive trade sales and manufacturers’ shipments for August, adjusted for seasonal and trading-day differences but not for price changes, was estimated at $1,297.8 billion, up 0.3 percent (±0.2) from July 2013, and were up 4.2 percent (±1.1) from August 2012.

Inventories: manufacturers’ and trade inventories, adjusted for seasonal variations but not for price changes, were estimated at an end-of-month level of $1,668.0 billion, up 0.3 percent (±0.1) from July 2013 and up 3.1 percent (±1.5) from August 2012.

Inventories/Sales Ratio: the total business inventories/sales ratio based on seasonally adjusted data at the end of August was 1.29. The August 2012 ratio was 1.30.

MTIS 2004-2013

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