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05.02.2019 23:02

U.S. services sector growth slows in January: Markit

Final data released by IHS Markit showed activity growth in the U.S. services sector improved at the slowest rate for four months.

The seasonally adjusted IHS Markit final U.S. Services Purchasing Managers’ Index (PMI) posted 54.2 in January, down slightly from 54.4 in December 2018. The rate of expansion was the softest for four months and weaker than both the series trend and the average seen in 2018.

Economists had expected the reading to come in at 54.2.

A reading above 50 signals an expansion in activity, while a reading below this level signals a contraction.

According to the report, the rise in output was also the slowest for four months, amid one of the softest increases in new business since October 2017. In line with a slower increase in new business, employment growth eased to the second-weakest since June 2017. However, firms registered a stronger degree of confidence towards business activity levels over the coming 12 months. On the price front, price pressures eased in January, with the rate of input price inflation weakening to a 22-month low. The increase in cost burdens was also slower than the series trend but solid overall.


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