The Institute for Supply Management’s seasonally adjusted non-manufacturing composite index rose to 50.1 in December from 48.7 in November, the group said yesterday.

Economists polled by Thomson Reuters had expected a 50.5 level.

The prices paid index grew to 58.7 from 57.8; the employment index increased to 44.0 from 41.6; the business activity index rose to 53.7 from 49.6; the new orders index was at 52.1, down from 55.1; backlog of orders slipped to 48.0 from 48.5; new export orders decreased to 46.0 from 54.5; inventories increased to 51.5 from 45.5; inventory sentiment slipped to 61.0 from 61.5; the supplier deliveries index grew to 50.5 from 48.5; and imports jumped to 52.5 from 46.0.

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