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Submission for OMB Review; Comment Request

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Information about this document as published in the Federal Register.

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DOC has submitted to the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) for clearance the following proposal for collection of information under the provisions of the Paperwork Reduction Act (44 U.S.C. chapter 35).

Agency: U.S. Census Bureau.

Title: Monthly Wholesale Trade Survey.

Form Number(s): SM-42(00).

Agency Approval Number: 0607-0190.

Type of Request: Extension of a currently approved collection.

Burden: 5,600 hours.

Number of Respondents: 4,000.

Avg Hours Per Response: 7 minutes.

Needs and Uses: The U.S. Census Bureau requests a three-year extension of the current OMB approval of the Start Printed Page 15615Monthly Wholesale Trade Survey (MWTS). The MWTS canvasses firms primarily engaged in merchant wholesale trade, except manufacturing sales branches and offices, that are located in the United States. This survey provides the only continuous measures of monthly wholesale sales, end-of-month inventories, method of inventory valuation, and inventories/sales ratios. The sales and inventory estimates produced from the MWTS provide current trends of economic activity by kind of business for the United States. Also, the estimates compiled from this survey provide valuable information for economic policy decisions by the government and are widely used by private businesses, trade organizations, professional associations, and other business research and analysis organizations.

The estimates produced by the MWTS are critical to the accurate measurement of total economic activity of the United States. The estimates of sales made by wholesale locations represent only merchant wholesalers, except manufacturing sales branches and offices, who take title to goods bought for resale to other companies. Wholesalers normally sell to industrial distributors, retail operations, cooperatives, and other businesses. The sales estimates include sales made on credit as well as on a cash basis, but exclude receipts from sales taxes and interest charges from credit sales.

The estimates of merchandise inventories represent all merchandise owned and held in wholesale locations, warehouses, and offices, as well as goods owned by wholesalers but held by others for sale on consignment, in third-party warehouses, or in transit for distribution to wholesale establishments or their customers. The estimates of merchandise inventories exclude fixtures and supplies not for resale, as well as merchandise held on consignment which are owned by others. Inventories are an important component in the Bureau of Economic Analysis' (BEA) calculation of the investment portion of the Gross Domestic Product (GDP).

We publish wholesale sales and inventory estimates based on the North American Industry Classification System (NAICS) which has been widely adopted throughout both the public and private sectors.

The Census Bureau tabulates the collected data to provide, with measurable reliability, statistics on U.S. merchant wholesale, except manufacturing sales branches and offices, sales, end-of-month inventories, methods of inventory valuation, and inventories/sales ratios.

The BEA is the primary Federal user of data collected in the MWTS. The BEA uses this information to prepare the national income and product accounts (NIPA), input-output accounts (I-O), and gross domestic product (GDP) by industry.

The Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) uses the data as input to its Producer Price Indexes and in developing productivity measurements. Private businesses use the wholesale sales and inventory data in computing business activity indexes. Other government agencies and businesses use this information for market research, product development, and business planning to gauge the current trends of the economy.

Affected Public: Business or other for-profit.

Frequency: Monthly.

Respondent's Obligation: Voluntary.

Legal Authority: Title 13 U.S.C. Section 182.

OMB Desk Officer: Susan Schechter, (202) 395-5103.

Copies of the above information collection proposal can be obtained by calling or writing Diana Hynek, Departmental Paperwork Clearance Officer, (202) 482-0266, Department of Commerce, room 6625, 14th and Constitution Avenue, NW., Washington, DC 20230 (or via the Internet at

Written comments and recommendations for the proposed information collection should be sent within 30 days of publication of this notice to Susan Schechter, OMB Desk Officer either by fax (202-395-7245) or e-mail

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Dated: March 22, 2005.

Madeleine Clayton,

Management Analyst, Office of the Chief Information Officer.

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[FR Doc. 05-5988 Filed 3-25-05; 8:45 am]