The Institute for Supply Management said that manufacturing's decline in the U.S. in July showed the slowest pace of decline since last August. The 48.9 reading was up from 44.8 in June. Production and new orders jumped to their highest level in two years, while new export orders grew after shrinking for nine months.
"If we stay on trend ... we would expect to be above 50 next month," said Norbert Ore, chair of ISM's manufacturing survey committee. A reading above that threshold would indicate growth in manufacturing, something that hasn't happened in 18 months.
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