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U.S. Services Sector Growth Hit New Record-High in October – ISM

The U.S. services sector kept its resilient momentum in October on robust demand and despite mounting supply-chain disruptions, according to data from a purchasing managers survey compiled by the Institute for Supply Management released Wednesday.

The ISM Services Report on Business PMI increased to 66.7 in October from 61.9 in September, reaching a new survey-high. The index is above forecasts from economists polled by The Wall Street Journal, who expected the indicator to come in at 62.0.

The PMI suggests that the U.S. services sector continued to grow solidly in October, as the index is well above the 50-point mark that separates expansion from contraction.

The rise was driven by record-high levels of both the business activity and new orders indexes, said Anthony Nieves, chair of the ISM Services Business Survey Committee.

The ISM services business activity index rose to 69.8 from 62.3 the previous month, while the new orders index climbed to 69.7 from 63.5, signaling that business and demand are growing strongly.

The employment index fell slightly to 51.6 from 53.0, but remained at expansion territory.

The supplier deliveries index increased to 75.7 from 68.8, suggesting slower deliveries and persisting supply-chain constrains.

“Ongoing challenges–including supply-chain disruptions and shortages of labor and materials–are constraining capacity and impacting overall business conditions,” Mr. Nieves said.

The prices index increased to 82.9 from 77.5, reaching its second-highest reading ever and pointing to a steep rise in prices.

“We still have very strong business activity throughout our business channels,” said one respondent from the wholesale trade sector. “This is despite a very challenging business environment of increasing costs, a very difficult employee retention and hiring environment, and massive logistical backlogs,” it said.
Source: Dow Jones

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