The non-manufacturing sector in the US took a big hit in October, after two consecutive months of growth, according to the Institute of Supply Management’s non-manufacturing index. The prevailing credit crisis, as well as the continuing housing contraction, has finally reached all facets of the economy, as the services sector is now feeling some pain. The NMI came in at 44.4%, down from 50.2% in September. Economists had forecast a number at 47.5%. Readings above 50% indicate growth, and anything below, contraction.

Last 10 Months

Month NMI Month NMI
Oct 2008 44.4 May 2008 51.7
Sep 2008 50.2 Apr 2008 52.0
Aug 2008 50.6 Mar 2008 49.6
Jul 2008 49.5 Feb 2008 49.3
Jun 2008 48.2 Jan 2008 44.6

The new-orders index plunged to 44.0% from 50.8%, and the production index fell to 44.2% from 52.1%. The employment index declined to 41.5% from 44.2%.

Report Details

Three industries reported growth in October- Other Services*; Health Care & Social Assistance; and Utilities.

Contraction was reported in 13 industry segments- Arts, Entertainment & Recreation; Real Estate, Rental & Leasing; Management of Companies & Support Services; Accommodation & Food Services; Construction; Retail Trade; Agriculture, Forestry, Fishing & Hunting; Educational Services; Professional, Scientific & Technical Services; Public Administration; Finance & Insurance; Information; and Wholesale Trade.

*Other Services include: Equipment & Machinery Repairing; Promoting or Administering Religious Activities; Grantmaking; Advocacy; and Providing Dry-Cleaning & Laundry Services, Personal Care Services, Death Care Services, Pet Care Services, Photofinishing Services, Temporary Parking Services, and Dating Services.

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