China official manufacturing gauge rises faster than expected to 3-month high in February

A woman working in the Tianye Tolian Heavy Industry Co. factory in Qinhuangdao, in Hebei province, China, on Dec 2, 2016.
A woman working in the Tianye Tolian Heavy Industry Co. factory in Qinhuangdao, in Hebei province, China, on Dec 2, 2016. PHOTO: REUTERS

BEIJING (REUTERS) - Activity in China's manufacturing sector expanded faster than expected in February, an official survey showed on Wednesday (March 1).

The official Purchasing Managers' Index (PMI) rose to a three-month high of 51.6 in February, compared with the previous month's 51.3, and above the 50-point mark that separates growth from contraction on a monthly basis.

Analysts polled by Reuters had predicted a reading of 51.1, pointing to a modest expansion as China's industrial firms continued to benefit from higher sales prices and a recovery in demand fueled by a construction boom.