The pace of growth in the cost of raw materials slowed last month for the first time this year, The Standard of Hong Kong reported, citing two surveys of purchasing managers. A CLSA Asia-Pacific Markets survey of more than 400 companies showed the index of input prices fell in July for the first time since December after hitting a 21-month high in June. A separate survey by the National Bureau of Statistics and the Federation of Logistics and Purchasing had the index slowing for the first time since November. Manufacturers in China have been trying to cope with surging prices of fuel and materials driven by a growing economy and more intense competition. Chinese companies in 30 industries said growing raw-material costs had led to losses or marginal profits in the first five months of the year.
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