Growth in China’s manufacturing and services sectors softened in July as activity at smaller factories shrank, according to official gauges. The manufacturing purchasing managers’ index published by China’s National Bureau of Statistics dipped to 51.4 in July, the Financial Times reports. Readings above 50 indicate industry expansion, while those below it indicate contraction. A sub-index of manufacturing production fell 0.9 points to 53.5 in July, while another for new orders dipped 0.3 points to 52.8. While a sub-index for activity at larger enterprises climbed 0.2 points to 52.9, another for mid-sized companies dropped 0.9 points for a contractionary reading of 49.6. A sub-index for small companies likewise fell 1.2 points to 48.9. Gains at larger companies appeared to help slow the pace of jobs shedding in July, with a sub-index for employment gaining 0.2 points to 49.2 in July. The official non-manufacturing PMI came in at 54.5 in July, down from a reading of 54.9 in June.
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