WASHINGTON - Business inventories rose 0.1% to $1,580.3 billion in June, while sales fell 1.1% to $1,229.7 billion, the Commerce Department reported Tuesday.

The June inventory gain followed an unrevised 0.3% gain in May. The increase slightly underperformed the expectations of economists polled by Thomson Reuters, who predicted a 0.2 % rise. Inventories jumped 5% over June 2011.

The 1.1% decrease in June sales followed a revised 0.3% decline in May, originally reported as a 0.1% decrease. The June decline was the largest since a 2.8% drop in March 2009. The June figure was still 3% above sales in June 2011.

The total business inventories/sales ratio based on seasonally adjusted data at the end of June was 1.29, above both the 1.27 ratio of the previous month and the 1.26 June 2011 ratio.

Subscribe Now

Independent and authoritative analysis and perspective for the bond buying industry.

14-Day Free Trial

No credit card required. Complete access to articles, breaking news and industry data.