The official gauge of China’s manufacturing activity edged up in August but remained in contraction for a fifth straight month, pointing to continued weakness in the world’s second-largest economy.
China’s official manufacturing purchasing managers’ index rose to 49.7 in August from 49.3 in July, the National Bureau of Statistics said Thursday. A reading above 50 indicates an expansion in activity while a reading below that indicates contraction.
The result was above the forecast of 49.1 compiled in a Wall Street Journal poll of economists.
The production subindex rose to 51.9 in August from 50.2 in July. The index for total new orders rose to 50.2 from 49.5 over the period, while that for new export orders improved to 46.7 from 46.3.
China’s nonmanufacturing PMI, which covers both service sector and construction activity, fell to 51.0 in August from 51.5 in July, the statistics bureau said.
The subindex tracking service activity declined to 50.5 in August from 51.5 in July, while the construction subindex rose 53.8 from 51.2 in July.