The Straits Times
Published on Feb 03, 2013

China services' slow uptick highlights mildness of recovery


BEIJING (REUTERS) - Growth in China's increasingly important services sector rose for the fourth straight month in January, though the slim increase added to evidence that the recovery in the world's second-largest economy remains a modest one.

China's official purchasing managers' index (PMI) for the non-manufacturing sector rose to 56.2 in January from 56.1 in December, the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) said on Sunday.

The figure follows the bureau's PMI for the manufacturing sector on Friday, which eased to 50.4 in January, missing market expectations. A reading above 50 indicates growth is accelerating, while one below 50 indicates it is slowing.

"This marginal rise of non-manufacturing PMI again casts doubt on the strength and sustainability of the recovery," said Zhang Zhiwei, chief China economist at Nomura in Hong Kong.