The U.S. services sector expanded in November at a slower rate than the previous month as growth in new business slowed, an industry report showed on Monday.
Financial data firm Markit said its "flash" services Purchasing Managers Index hit 56.3 in November, slightly below expectations and the lowest since April, compared with October's final reading of 57.1.
The growth rate has slowed steadily since peaking this year at 61 in June, but is still above the 50 level that signals expansion in economic activity.
"A fifth-consecutive monthly slowing in growth in the service sector adds to signs that the economic upturn has lost considerable momentum, though it’s important to note that the pace of expansion remains robust by historical standards," said Chris Williamson, chief economist at Markit.
The services sector new business subindex fell to 55.9 versus the final 57.8 reading in October.
The employment subindex, however, showed strength coming in at the highest compared to final readings since June.
Markit's "flash" composite PMI, a weighted average of its manufacturing and services indexes, hit 56.1 in November versus 57.2 in October, with the employment subindex also improving.
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