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NYC manufacturing continues to expand

Feb. 4, 2013 at 2:12 PM

NEW YORK, Feb. 4 (UPI) -- Business activity in New York City rose in January, its second fastest expansion in nine months, the Institute of Supply Management said Monday.

A report from ISM-NY Inc. said the city's Index for Current Business Conditions came in at 56.7 in January, 1 point behind a revised 57.7 reading for December.

While the index measuring current conditions was relatively strong, the index measuring optimism for the next half a year, the Six-Month Outlook index, fell to a four-month low, dropping to 60 from a revised December reading of 69.

In the index, figures above 50 indicate growth and figures below 50 indicate contraction.

For January, the employment index rose to a four-month high, climbing to 53.1 from December's mark of 49.7, which was a seven-month low.

ISM said for the first time in three months the most common response to a list of business impediments was "no difficulties."

In January, 32 percent of respondents said "no difficulties" while 25 percent indicated that a shortage of skilled labor was a business concern.

A working capital shortage was listed by 21 percent of the respondents. That was followed by security concerns, listed by 18 percent.

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