US business inventories rose in April as motor vehicle dealers restocked to meet demand, according to a government report published yesterday. The Commerce Department said inventories increased 0.4 per cent to a record $1.58 trillion (£1 trillion), after rising by an unrevised 0.3 per cent in March. The strong rise was driven by a 1.9 per cent rise in restocking by car dealers, in line with strong demand from households earlier this year. That represents an acceleration from the 1.5 per cent rise in motor inventories in March. There were also gains in stocks of building materials and furniture. However, not every sector saw the same levels of demand in the month – clothing inventories dipped 0.2 per cent.