Defense Inventory:

Growth in Secondary Items

NSIAD-88-189BR: Published: Jul 19, 1988. Publicly Released: Sep 27, 1988.

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In response to a congressional request, GAO analyzed the Department of Defense's (DOD) secondary-item inventory growth.

GAO found that: (1) DOD defines secondary items as replacement, spare, and repair components, as well as personnel support and consumable items; (2) the value of DOD secondary inventories increased by about $51 billion between 1980 and 1987; (3) Navy and Air Force inventories grew the most, with increases of about $19 billion and $18 billion, respectively; (4) the greatest growth was in aircraft components, at $30.6 billion; (5) construction, industrial, and general supplies grew $9.2 billion, and ship and submarine parts grew $8.2 billion; (6) required stocks grew about $27 billion, while stocks in excess of requirements grew about $19 billion; (7) about $5 billion of the inventory growth was unstratified; and (8) the percentage increase in unrequired stocks was more than double the percentage increase in required stocks. GAO also found that, although DOD attributed much of the inventory growth to inflation, modernization, and increased lead time and war reserves, some of the growth was due to such problems as inaccurate requirements computations.

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