The Philadelphia region's services sector growth suggests "that regional non-manufacturing activity improved,” as the general business conditions index rose to 45.3 in May from to 27.6 in April, the Federal Reserve Bank of Philadelphia said on Tuesday.

According to the Fed’s non-manufacturing report on business, the new orders, and sales/revenues all gained after posting declines in April, while the full-time employment index remained positive and the price indicators increased. Firms continue to expect growth over the next six months.

The prices paid index rose to 33.8 from 26.0 last month, while prices received dropped to 22.6 from 12.1. “Nearly 34% of the respondents reported increases in input prices, while none of the firms reported decreases. Most firms (58%) reported no change in input prices,” according to the report.

New orders index jumped to 36.2 from 12.5, sales or revenues rose to 33.7 from 13.5, the unfilled orders index dropped to 6.2 from 8.0, the inventories index gained to 8.2 from 0.1, the number of full time employees index fell to 7.7 from 15.8 and the average employee workweek rose to 28.6 from 12.1.

The six months from now regional general business conditions index increased to 50.1 from 41.5, while the company general business conditions index rose to 45.3 from 40.8.

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Chip Barnett

Chip Barnett

Chip Barnett is a journalist with more than 40 years of experience. Barnett is currently Senior Market Reporter for The Bond Buyer.