U.S. private sector output growth loses momentum in August: report
HOUSTON, Aug. 23 (Xinhua) -- The U.S. Purchasing Managers' Index (PMI) survey for August indicated that business activity growth in the U.S. private sector eased further from the three-year peak seen in May, according to data released by the IHS Markit on Thursday.
The survey highlighted a loss of momentum in both the manufacturing and service sectors, and payroll numbers, meanwhile, increased at the slowest pace since June 2017.
At 55.0 in August, down from 55.7 in the previous month, the seasonally adjusted IHS Markit Flash U.S. Composite PMI Output Index signaled the weakest rise in private sector business activity since April. That said, the latest reading was still well above the 50.0 no-change value and broadly in line with its post-crisis average (55.2).
Slower business activity growth reflected the weakest rise in new order volumes since December 2017.
Service sector firms experienced another robust rise in business activity during August, but the rate of expansion eased to a four-month low. This was signaled by a decline in the seasonally adjusted IHS Markit Flash U.S. Services PMI Business Activity Index to 55.2 in August, from 56.0 in July.
Weaker growth in client spending contributed to a sustained fall in backlogs of work, with the latest decline the greatest since March 2017.
The headline seasonally adjusted IHS Markit Flash U.S. Manufacturing PMI registered 54.5 in August, down from 55.3 in July and the lowest reading since November 2017.
Mirroring the trends seen across the service sector, the latest data pointed to slower rates of output and new business growth at manufacturing companies. Job creation and capacity pressures also moderated in August.
Commenting on the flash PMI data, Chris Williamson, chief business economist at HIS Markit, said, "The U.S. economy lost a little pace in August, according to the flash PMI, but continued to grow at a solid rate. The PMI is indicative of the economy growing at an annualized rate of roughly 2.5 percent, down from a 3.0 percent indicated rate in July."
IHS Markit is a global company in information, analytics and solutions for the major industries and markets that drive economies worldwide.