Inventories have been on the climb raising the risk of unwanted overhang. But overhang isn’t the story of the December wholesale trade report where a large 1.0 percent build is far outmatched by a 2.6 percent surge in sales. The results pull the stock-to-sales ratio down sharply to 1.29 from 1.31. Wholesale auto inventories rose 2.0 percent in December, a month that proved very strong for retail auto sales and was also very strong for wholesale sales where autos jumped 5.5 percent in the month. Watch for business inventories on Wednesday of next week’s calendar which will wind up the year-end inventory picture.

Interesting that dips in sales like we’ve experienced over the last couple of years previously happened only during recessions:

This chart was updated Jan 13, and even with the drop to 1.29 reported today inventories remained elevated:


Trump lashes out at Sen. John McCain again, this time for criticizing Yemen mission

The Arizona Republican, who was briefed on last month’s mission, told NBC News on Wednesday that he cannot call it a success “when you lose a $75 million airplane and, more importantly, an American life is lost.” In a series of tweets Thursday, Trump argued that McCain “talking about the success or failure of a mission” only “emboldens the enemy.”


McCain’s office in a statement: “Senator McCain will continue to execute his oversight duties as Chairman of the Senate Armed Services Committee and support brave men and women serving our nation in uniform.”

McCain, who was a prisoner of war during the Vietnam War, came under attack by then-candidate Trump in July. “He’s not a war hero. He’s a war hero because he was captured. I like people who weren’t captured,” Trump said.