WASHINGTON — Wholesale inventories increased 0.6% in February, surpassing economists' estimates for the largest gain in three months, the Commerce Department reported Friday.

Wholesale sales increased 0.8%, the 11th consecutive monthly increase.

Inventories in January increased 0.1%, revised higher from the 0.2% decline initially reported.

Economists expected wholesale inventories to increase 0.4% and for sales to increase 0.5%, according to the median estimate from Thomson Reuters.

Inventories of durable goods increased 0.5%.

The inventory-to-sales ratio stayed steady at 1.16 in February, the same figure as January.

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