ISM: Service sector expands in May

The ISM Services Index registered 55.9% in May; 1.2 percentage points lower than the April reading of 57.1%. This reading represents the 24th straight month of growth for the services sector, which has expanded for all but two of the last 148 months.

Fourteen non-manufacturing industries reported growth in May. Survey respondents noted “Supply chain improving, with more reliability of supplier deliveries. Inflationary pressures increased on goods and services. Employment also improving in most markets. Fewer daily fires and more planning time.”

The Business Activity Index registered 54.5% in May, a decrease of 4.6 percentage points from the April reading of 59.1%.

Service sector employment expanded in May, and registered 50.2%, 0.7 percentage points higher than April’s reading of 49.5%. Nine industries reported growth in employment for the month.

The New Orders Index was 57.6%, up 3.0% from the prior month’s reading of 54.6%. Comments from respondents include: “Consumers becoming more optimistic in training, in spite of dire economic news” and “Large capital expenditure investments in renewable energy space.”

The supplier deliveries index registered 61.3% in May, down 3.8% from the prior month. A reading above 50% indicates slower deliveries.

Read the ISM release.