CHICAGO PMI BEATS BUT EMPLOYMENT CONTRACTS TO LOWEST LEVEL SINCE APRIL 2013

The Institute for Supply Management says its purchasing manager’s index (PMI) hit 59.6 in January.

Analysts expected a reading of 59.0, down from a revised 60.8.

But the employment subindex slipped below 50, signaling contraction. The reading came in at 49.2 versus 51.6 in December. It’s the lowest reading since last April.

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“…While employment fell back into contraction, this doesn’t appear to be indicative of current demand conditions,” ISM economist Philip Uglow said, adding: “Business activity continued to ease in January but remained at a relatively high level. Production and New Orders remained firm.”

Here’s the chart:

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