Businesses boosted their inventories for a third straight month in March, a further sign that they are gaining confidence in the strength of the recovery.
The Commerce Department says that businesses increased inventories by 0.4 percent in March, matching expectations. Total business sales rose 2.3 percent, the best showing in four months and the sixth straight gain in sales.
The hope is that sustained increases in demand will encourage businesses to step up orders and restock depleted shelves, giving a boost to factories and prompting them to rehire workers.
© Copyright 2013 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.