WASHINGTON (AP) — U.S. businesses left their stockpiles unchanged in March for a second month while their sales fell sharply.
The Commerce Department says business stockpiles showed no increase in March on a seasonally adjusted basis. Businesses hadn't upped their restocking in February, either.
Sales fell 1.1 percent in March compared with February when sales had risen 1 percent.
A lack of inventory building could slow economic growth because it means businesses are ordering fewer factory-made goods.
But increased restocking at a time when sales are falling can also signal trouble for the economy, if businesses react by suddenly cutting back their stockpiles.