June 5, 2019
WASHINGTON (Reuters) – U.S. services sector activity picked up in May and industries hired more workers, which could ease concerns that the economy was slowing sharply following a recent spate of weak reports.
The Institute for Supply Management (ISM) said on Wednesday its non-manufacturing activity index increased 1.4 points to a reading of 56.9 last month. A reading above 50 indicates expansion in the sector, which accounts for more than two-thirds of U.S. economic activity.
Last month’s increase in services industry activity reflected a 1.7 points jump in the production subindex. Activity was also boosted by gains in the new orders measure. A gauge of services industry employment surged 4.4 points to the highest level since October 2018.
(Reporting By Lucia Mutikani; Editing by Chizu Nomiyama)