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Manufacturing activity flat, employment rises

August 01 2008

Economic activity in the U.S. manufacturing sector increased in July at about the same rate as in June, but employment rose after months of contraction, the Institute for Supply Management reported.

The ISM's key purchasing managers' index for manufacturing, released today, registered 50.0 in July, almost unchanged from 50.2 in June. Readings of more than 50 indicate expansion.

The employment portion of the index, however, surged 8.2 points in July to 51.9, swinging back to growth after eight months of contraction. The reading was 43.7 in June.

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