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Italian service sector growth picks up slightly in October: PMI

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Italian service sector activity picked up slightly in October, a survey showed on Friday, but gave less of a boost than anticipated to the country's stuttering economy.

[ROME] Italian service sector activity picked up slightly in October, a survey showed on Friday, but gave less of a boost than anticipated to the country's stuttering economy.

The Markit/ADACI Business Activity Index (PMI) for services companies rose to 51.0 in October from 50.7 in September, staying above the 50 mark that divides growth from contraction.

The index undershot a mean forecast of 51.5 from a Reuters survey of 11 analysts.

Business activity rose partly thanks to an increase in new work at service providers. Markit's sub-index for new business edged up to 51.8 from September's four-month low of 51.5.

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The corresponding survey for manufacturing, released on Wednesday, showed growth in that sector slipping to 50.9 from 51.0 in September, also missing analyst expectations.

The composite PMI for services and manufacturing was 51.1 in October, the same rate as in the previous month.

Italy's economy notched up 0.7 per cent growth last year, less than half the average rate in the 19-nation euro zone. Prime Minister Matteo Renzi's government expects an 0.8 per cent expansion in 2016.

Output stagnated in the second quarter of 2016, but the Bank of Italy has said it probably grew modestly in the third. GDP data for the three months to September will be released on Nov. 15.

REUTERS

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