U.S. Markets

U.S. business inventories unchanged in September

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - U.S. business inventories were unchanged in September amid a jump in sales, government data showed on Wednesday.

The Commerce Department said the unchanged reading in business inventories followed a downwardly revised 0.6 percent increase in August. Inventories are a key component of gross domestic product and were previously reported to have risen 0.7 percent in August.

Retail inventories fell 0.9 percent in September instead of the 1.0 percent drop reported last month. Inventory investment contributed 0.73 percentage point to the economy’s 3.0 percent annualized growth pace in the third quarter.

Business sales shot up 1.4 percent in September, adding to August’s 0.8 percent increase. At September’s sales pace, it would take 1.36 months for businesses to clear shelves, down from 1.38 months in August.

Reporting by Lucia Mutikani; Editing by Paul Simao