Business inventories are looking better than anticipated.

Data out this morning showed that December's business inventories rose 0.1%, slower than economists were expecting. Economists had expected the December number to show that inventories grew 0.2% for the month. This pace has not been seen since January 1999.

Growth in inventories in November was revised to 0.3% from 0.5% -- a good sign for tech companies that have been suffering for months from high inventory levels. Growing inventories signal slow demand.

Business inventories measure the sum of inventories at each of the three stages of production: manufacturing, wholesaling and retailing.