The report showed manufacturing and trade sales rose 0.5 percent on a seasonally adjusted basis to $1.24 trillion.
From July 2011, inventories rose by 5.3 percent while sales rose 3.1 percent from a year earlier.
The inventory-to-sales ratio -- reflecting how many months it would take a company to deplete its inventory at the current sales pace -- came in at 1.28. A year earlier, the ratio was 1.26.
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