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U.S. Manufacturing Activity Expands at Slowest Pace in Two Years

Wall Street Journal (11/02/15) Harriet Torry

Manufacturing expanded at its slowest pace in more than two years in October, according to the Institute for Supply Management. The ISM’s manufacturing purchasers managers index declined from 50.2 in September to 50.1 in October. A reading above 50 indicates expansion.

Manufacturers are “not in a robust growth mode,” says Bradley Holcomb, who oversees the ISM survey. “It’s a little bit of wait and see.” Although overall manufacturing activity has grown for 34 consecutive months, the pace of growth has contracted for four months in a row.

Some economists say an increase in new orders indicate manufacturers may be recovering from their slowdown. Data from Markit Economics released yesterday shows manufacturing activity rose to a six-month high in October.