Wholesale trade experienced more than $7.1 trillion in sales in 2021, a greater than 22% increase over 2020 when the industry recorded just over $5.8 trillion in revenues, the U.S. Census Bureau reported Thursday.
It was a record year for the industry, also besting the last pre-pandemic year of 2019, which saw roughly $6.1 trillion in wholesale revenues.
December 2021 sales of merchant wholesalers — except manufacturers’ sales branches and offices, after seasonal adjustments — were $634.6 billion, up 0.2% from the revised November level and up 21.8% from the revised December 2020 level.
Total inventories of merchant wholesalers, after seasonal adjustments and variations, were $790.8 billion at the end of December, up 2.2% from the revised November level. Total inventories were up 18.5% from the revised December 2020 level.
Inflation continues to be a significant factor in the U.S. economy as the Consumer Price Index rose 0.6% in January on a seasonally adjusted basis, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported.
Over the past 12 months, this index increased 7.5% before seasonal adjustment. Increases in the indexes for food, electricity, and shelter were the largest contributors to the seasonally adjusted increase.