(Yicai Global) March 3 -- China’s service sector activity dropped to the lowest level in February from May 2020 amid the Lunar New Year holiday and new Covid-19 cases, according to a private gauge.
The Caixin general services purchasing managers’ index fell by 0.5 point to 51.5 from a month earlier, according to data financial media outlet Caixin published today. A mark above 50 indicates expansion.
The Caixin comprehensive PMI declined by 0.5 point to 51.7, revealing the slowest growth in 10 months.
The numbers were in line with those issued by the National Bureau of Statistics. The official service industry PMI edged down by 0.3 point to 50.8. The comprehensive PMI fell 1.2 points to 51.6.
Caixin sub-indexes were slumping. Both the service operation activity index and the new order index were the lowest in the past 10 months due to the coronavirus pandemic. For the first time in four months, the new export order index fell into negative territory.
Enterprises had laid off employees to cut costs. The service sector's employment index began contracting after six straight months of expansion.
The input price index, which has been rising rapidly since 2012 due to the increasing labor costs and raw material prices, edged down in February, still remaining in positive territory.
Editor: Emmi Laine, Xiao Yi