econintersect.com
       
  

FREE NEWSLETTER: Econintersect sends a nightly newsletter highlighting news events of the day, and providing a summary of new articles posted on the website. Econintersect will not sell or pass your email address to others per our privacy policy. You can cancel this subscription at any time by selecting the unsubscribing link in the footer of each email.



posted on 09 March 2016

January 2016 Wholesale Sales Weakness Grows

Written by Steven Hansen

The headlines say wholesale sales were down month-over-month with inventory levels remaining at levels associated with recessions. Our analysis shows a declining trend of the 3 month averages. The best way to look at this series may be the unadjusted data three month rolling averages.

Note that Econintersect analysis is based on the change from one year ago. Econintersect Analysis:

  • unadjusted sales rate of growth decelerated 2.3 % month-over-month.
  • unadjusted sales year-over-year growth is down 6.4 % year-over-year
  • unadjusted sales (but inflation adjusted) down 6.2 % year-over-year
  • the 3 month rolling average of unadjusted sales decelerated 0.2 % month-over-month, and down 4.2 % year-over-year. There has been a general deceleration trend since late 2014.

Year-over-Year Sales - Unadjusted (blue line), Unadjusted but Inflation Adjusted (red line), 3 month Rolling Averages (yellow line)

z%20wholesale1.PNG

  • unadjusted inventories up 2.0 % year-over-year (deceleration of 0.1 % month-over-month), inventory-to-sales ratio is 1.51 which is historically is at recessionary levels.

US Census Headlines based on seasonally adjusted data:

  • sales down 1.3 % month-over-month, down 3.1 % (last month was reported down 4.5 %) year-over-year
  • inventories up 0.3 % month-over-month, inventory-to-sales ratios were 1.28 one year ago - and are now 1.35.
  • the market (from Bloomberg) expected inventory month-over-month change between -0.4 % to 0.3 % (consensus -0.1 %) versus the +0.3 % reported.

Wholesale Sales - Unadjusted - $ Millions

wholesale_2005on.PNG

Wholesale sales were at record highs for almost two years - until 2015 where they contracted year-over-year (and the contraction continues). Overall, the inventory-to-sales ratios (a rising ratio is an indicator of economic slowing) was abnormally high relative to past Novembers.

Unadjusted Inventory-to-Sales Ratio (blue line - left axis), Year-over-Year Change (red line - right axis)

wholesale_inventory.PNG

Year-over-year change in the inventory-to-sales ratio is what is important. A jump in the ratio which could indicate a slowing economy (one month of data is not a trend). A flat trend would indicate an economy which was neither accelerating or decelerating. A decelerating trend would indicate an improving economy. Since mid-2014 there has been a general deterioration of the inventory-to-sales ratio indicating a slowing economy.

Caveats on the Use of this Index

The data in this index continues to be revised up to 3 months following initial reporting. The revision usually is not significant enough to change the interpretation of each month's data in real time. Generally there are also annual revisions to this data series.

The methodology used by US Census to seasonally adjust the data is not providing a realistic understanding of the month-to-month movements of the data. One reason is that US Census uses data over multiple years which includes the largest modern recession which likely distorts the analysis. Further, Econintersect believes there has been a fundamental shift in seasonality in the aftermath of the Great Recession of 2007 - the New Normal.

Econintersect determines the month-over-month change by subtracting the current month's year-over-year change from the previous month's year-over-year change. This is the best of the bad options available to determine month-over-month trends - as the preferred methodology would be to use multi-year data (but the New Normal effects and the Great Recession distort historical data).

This series is NOT inflation adjusted. To make this adjustment Econintersect uses the PPI - subindex Total Wholesale AWHLTRAWHLTR.

As economic indicators go, wholesale sales and inventories are poor at spotting economic problems. Wholesale data did not start contracting during the Great Recession until October 2008. The only portion of wholesale trade data which seems to correspond to general economic conditions is wholesale trade employment.

All Employees - Wholesale



>>>>> Scroll down to view and make comments <<<<<<



Permanent link to most recent post on this topic

Click here for Historical Releases Listing










Make a Comment

Econintersect wants your comments, data and opinion on the articles posted.  As the internet is a "war zone" of trolls, hackers and spammers - Econintersect must balance its defences against ease of commenting.  We have joined with Livefyre to manage our comment streams.

To comment, using Livefyre just click the "Sign In" button at the top-left corner of the comment box below. You can create a commenting account using your favorite social network such as Twitter, Facebook, Google+, LinkedIn or Open ID - or open a Livefyre account using your email address.



You can also comment using Facebook directly using he comment block below.







Econintersect Economic Releases


search_box

Print this page or create a PDF file of this page
Print Friendly and PDF


The growing use of ad blocking software is creating a shortfall in covering our fixed expenses. Please consider a donation to Econintersect to allow continuing output of quality and balanced financial and economic news and analysis.


Take a look at what is going on inside of Econintersect.com
Main Home
Analysis Blog
Consumers Carry Weak GDP Number Out of the Red
The Theory of the Monetary Circuit: A Critique
News Blog
Early Headlines: Asia Stocks Lower, Oil Soft, Japan Deflation Strengthens, Trade Backlash, Trump Fades, Veto Override Reconsidered, DB Could Take Down Merkel And Euro, Germany's "Adolfina" And More
What Are British People Most Proud Of
Trust In Mass Media Erodes
Shimon Peres Was An Israeli Nationalist First And A Peacemaker Second
Guessing Game: Valuations Of Trump's Fortune
What We Read Today 29 September 2016
This Mushroom Starts Killing You Before You Even Realize It
August 2016 Median Household Income Has Declined From The Beginning Of The Year
August 2016 Pending Home Sales Index Declines?
24 September 2016 Initial Unemployment Claims: Rolling Averages Continue to Improve.
Third Estimate 2Q2016 GDP Revised Upward. Corporate Profits Down.
The Terrorist Networks At Our Fingertips
Infographic Of The Day: Dubai Interesting Statistics And Facts
Investing Blog
Are You A Trader Or Investor?
Investing.com Technical Summary 29 September 2016
Opinion Blog
First: 'Over-Population End-of Times' Now: 'Shrinking Population Disaster'
The Federal Reserve Note
Precious Metals Blog
Where Silver Prices Are Headed Now After Fed's Latest Inaction
Live Markets
29Sep2016 Market Close: Wall Street Bracing For Major Turn Down If German Bank Fails, Crude Prices Rise Towards 50 Handle And US Dollar Showing New Strength
Amazon Books & More






.... and keep up with economic news using our dynamic economic newspapers with the largest international coverage on the internet
Asia / Pacific
Europe
Middle East / Africa
Americas
USA Government



Crowdfunding ....






























 navigate econintersect.com

Blogs

Analysis Blog
News Blog
Investing Blog
Opinion Blog
Precious Metals Blog
Markets Blog
Video of the Day
Weather

Newspapers

Asia / Pacific
Europe
Middle East / Africa
Americas
USA Government
     

RSS Feeds / Social Media

Combined Econintersect Feed
Google+
Facebook
Twitter
Digg

Free Newsletter

Marketplace - Books & More

Economic Forecast

Content Contribution

Contact

About

  Top Economics Site

Investing.com Contributor TalkMarkets Contributor Finance Blogs Free PageRank Checker Active Search Results Google+

This Web Page by Steven Hansen ---- Copyright 2010 - 2016 Econintersect LLC - all rights reserved