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ISM US manufacturing index rises to 51.8 in March

[NEW YORK] The US economy's manufacturing sector resumed growth in March, bolstered by strength in new orders, according to an industry report released on Friday.

The Institute for Supply Management (ISM) said its index of national factory activity rose to 51.8 from 49.5 the month before. The reading was just above expectations of 50.7 from a Reuters poll of 68 economists.

A reading above 50 indicates expansion in the manufacturing sector and a reading below 50 indicates contraction.

The employment index fell to 48.1 from 48.5 a month earlier. Expectations called for a reading of 49.5.

New orders climbed to 58.3 from 51.5. The prices paid index rose to 51.5 from 38.5, compared to expectations of 42.0.


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