The ISM Non-Manufacturing Index registered 55.2 points in March, 2.4 percentage points below February’s figure. This was the 87th consecutive month of growth. Fifteen non-manufacturing industries reported growth in March, while three reported contraction.
Growth in the Business Activity Index decreased 4.7 points to 58.9. Fourteen industries reported increased business activity and two reported decreased activity. Respondents noted new capital budgets, increasing optimism, and strong price increases.
Non-manufacturing employment grew for the 37th consecutive month. The index decreased 3.6 percentage point to 51.6. Nine industries reported increased employment, while six reported decreased employment.
The New Orders Index fell 2.3 points to 58.9. Some respondents commented that they had added additional business with existing customers.
Supplier deliveries slowed for the 15th consecutive month, as the index registered 51.5 points (readings above 50 for this index indicate slower deliveries). Eight industries reported slower deliveries, while three reported faster deliveries.
Read the ISM release.