ISM: Service Sector Growth Continues in December

The ISM Services Index registered 62.0% in December; 7.1 percentage points below the November reading of 69.1%. This reading represents the nineteenth straight month of growth for the services sector, which has expanded for all but two of the last 143 months.

Sixteen non-manufacturing industries reported growth. Survey respondents noted “Activity continues to maintain a steady pace. Inventory levels and outages are persistent with our suppliers; however, starting to see some relief in the supply chain, but not below the critical point yet. Prices continue to be driven up, with shipping costs the largest driver due to inflated pressures on capacity and fuel costs.”

The Business Activity Index registered 67.6% in December, a decrease of 7.0 percentage points from the November reading of 74.6%. This represents growth for the nineteenth consecutive month.

Service sector employment grew in December for the sixth month, and registered 54.9% in December, 1.6% lower than November. Eleven industries reported growth in employment for the month.

The New Orders Index was 61.5%, down 8.2% from the prior month. Comments from respondents include: “New customers added, which has led to greater sales orders and business activity” and “Increased customer activity related to infrastructure needs.”

The supplier deliveries index registered 63.9% in December, down 11.8% from the prior month. A reading above 50% indicates slower deliveries.

Read the ISM release.