American Supply Association member wholesaler-distributors reported median sales growth of 1.7% for the month ending Jan. 31, 2014, compared to the same month last year.

While the PHCP segment saw 3.4% growth, the industrial PVF segment declined 6.6%. Calendar year-to-date, all respondents reported a median sales increase of 1.7% with a 3.4% increase in the PHCP segment and 6.6% decline in the industrial PVF segment. For the trailing 12 months ending Jan. 31, 2014, all respondents reported a median sales increase of 3.9%. While the responding PHCP distributors saw 7.7% growth, industrial PVF distributors declined 2.5%.

Overall, the median increase in inventories was 3.7% for January 2014 vs. 2013 (5.2% for PHCP and 0.1% for PVF). The median three-month average days sales outstanding were 44.5 days for PHCP members and 41.4 for PVF. More than half of all participating members reported having more full-time equivalent employees compared to a year ago; however, on the PVF side, better than half reported being even or down.

The company gross margin percentage for the month compared to one year ago was up for 72.2% of the industrial PVF respondents but even or down for better than half of PHCP respondents. Overall, the company YTD gross margin percentage was up for about half of all respondents and even or down for the other half (up 42.1% for PHCP and 66.7% PVF). YTD profit before tax increased for 34.3% of the respondents.