The manufacturing sector logged another strong showing in the latest Purchasing Managers' Index (PMI) - an early indicator of factory activity - which came in at 52.9 last month.
This marked its 15th straight month of expansion and was also the highest reading since December 2009. A reading of 50 and above indicates expansion.
Economists said the data points to continued strong growth in manufacturing - which makes up a fifth of the economy and has been its brightest spot this year.
SEE TOP OF THE NEWS: Manufacturing shows strong signs of broad-based growth