WASHINGTON — U.S. companies restocked their store shelves and warehouses at a steady pace in May, a sign they expect sales will remain solid in the months ahead.
Business stockpiles rose 0.5 percent in May, the Commerce Department said Tuesday. That was down from a 0.6 percent gain the previous month. April’s increase was the highest in six months. Total business sales rose 0.4 percent, much lower than April’s 0.8 percent gain. Steady inventory rebuilding can bolster economic growth by increasing demand for manufactured goods and boosting factory production.
Economists generally were encouraged by the report.