Dollar Values - All dollar values presented are expressed
in current dollars (not adjusted to a constant dollar series). Consequently,
when comparing estimates to prior years, users also should consider price
Confidentiality - Title 13 of the United States Code authorizes
the Census Bureau to conduct censuses and surveys. Section 9 of the same Title
requires that any information collected from the public under the authority
of Title 13 be maintained as confidential. Section 214 of Title 13 and Sections
3559 and 3571 of Title 18 of the United States Code provide for the imposition
of penalties of up to five years in prison and up to $250,000 in fines for
wrongful disclosure of confidential census information. In accordance with
Title 13, no estimates are published that would disclose the operations of
an individual firm. The Census Bureauís internal Disclosure Review Board sets
the confidentiality rules for all data releases. A checklist approach is used
to ensure that all potential risks to the confidentiality of the data are
considered and addressed.
Disclosure Limitation - A disclosure of data occurs when
an individual can use published statistical information to identify either
an individual or firm that has provided information under a pledge of confidentiality.
Disclosure limitation is the process used to protect the confidentiality of
the survey data provided by an individual or firm. Using disclosure limitation
procedures, the Census Bureau modifies or removes the characteristics that
put confidential information at risk for disclosure. Although it may appear
that a table shows information about a specific individual or business, the
Census Bureau has taken steps to disguise or suppress the original data while
making sure the results are still useful. The techniques used by the Census
Bureau to protect confidentiality in tabulations vary, depending on the type
Unpublished Estimates - Additional statistics, such as
dollar volume estimates for some kinds of business not separately shown in
this report, are produced as a byproduct of the regularly published statistics. These additional estimates have not been included in this
publication because of high sampling variability, poor response, or other factors that may make them potentially misleading.
It should be noted that some unpublished estimates can be derived directly
from this report by subtracting published estimates from their respective
totals. However, the estimates obtained by such subtraction would be subject to the poor response rates
or high sampling variability. Individuals who use estimates in this report
to create new estimates should cite the Census Bureau as the source of only
the original estimates.
Adjustment Factors - The X-12 ARIMA Program to derive
the factors for adjusting data for seasonal variations and, in the case of
sales, for trading day differences. Seasonal adjustment of estimates is an
approximation based on current and past experiences. Therefore, the adjustment
could become less precise because of changes in economic conditions and other
elements that introduce significant changes in seasonal and trading-day patterns.
Concurrent seasonal adjustment uses all available unadjusted estimates (including
the latest preliminary estimates) as input to the X-12 ARIMA program.
When unadjusted preliminary and final estimates become available,
all estimates are used as input to the X-12 ARIMA program and new factors
are applied to the preliminary and final estimates (1 month before
the preliminary) and to the previous year estimates that correspond
to the preliminary month.
Sales - Sales include merchandise sold for cash or credit
at wholesale and retail by establishments primarily engaged in merchant wholesale
trade; receipts from customers for rental or leasing of equipment, instruments,
tools, etc.; receipts for delivery, installation, alteration, maintenance,
repair, storage, and other services; and gasoline, liquor, tobacco, and other
excise taxes which are paid by the manufacturer and passed along to the wholesaler.
Sales are net after deductions for refunds and allowances for merchandise
returned by customers. Sales that are made on an agency basis for others are
included as gross sales. Direct shipments on orders from wholesalers are also
included in sales. Total sales do not include non-operating income from such
sources as investments, rental or sale of real estate, etc. Sales exclude
sales taxes and excise taxes collected directly from customers and paid directly
to a local, State, or Federal tax agency. Also excluded are receipts from
customers for carrying or other credit charges.
Inventories -Inventories represent stocks on a non-LIFO
basis (firms that valued inventory on a LIFO basis included the values of
LIFO reserve in the total inventory levels) of merchandise owned by merchant
wholesalers at the end of the month, regardless of location. Goods held on
consignment and items not held for sale such as fixtures, equipment, and supplies
are not included. Goods held in foreign trade zones in the United States are
also included. Methods of valuation may vary according to the accounting practices
of the firm.
- The inventories/sales ratios are derived by dividing the dollar
value of inventories by the dollar value of sales. No adjustment is made in these ratios for the markup
in sales which may vary from trade to trade.
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