U.S. non-manufacturing sector expanded for the 34th straight month in October, but the sector grew at a slower pace than in September, a widely recognized U.S. private survey revealed on Monday.
The Non-Manufacturing Index (NMI), which measures activity in the U.S. service sector, decreased to 54.2 percent in October, down 0.9 percentage point from September, the Institute for Supply Management (ISM) said in its monthly survey.
The NMI survey covers all sectors outside of manufacturing. A reading above 50 indicates expansion of the service sector.
The index showed that new orders, a signal of future business, shed last month to 54.8 from 57.7 in September, while the survey's employment component rose by 3.8 percentage points from the previous month to 54.9 in October, said the ISM.
A total number of 13 industries reported growth last month including construction and real estate, while five other industries including mining and wholesale trade reported contraction.
The NMI index is closely watched because the service sector absorbs about 90 percent the U.S. workforce, and is a key indicator for the overall health of the economy.
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