Service industry slows in September

The service industry took a hit in September, with the Institute for Supply Management's overall non-manufacturing index falling to 54.4 from last month's reading of 58.6.

The Institute for Supply Management's overall non-manufacturing index fell to 54.4 from last month's reading of 58.6.

Today, the Institute for Supply Management released their latest Non-Manufacturing Report on Business indicating that service related business activity slowed in September with the overall non-manufacturing index falling to 54.4 from last month's reading of 58.6.

At 55.1 the business activity index plunged since last month declining 7.55% below the level seen a year earlier.

This month, service industry respondents are sounding a bit down with respondents citing slowing activity, flat business and uncertainty over healthcare costs:

"Overall business conditions are slowing — small manpower decrease of 5 percent." (Construction)

"Business levels continue to be strong. Shifting from transient to group travelers." (Accommodation & Food Services) 

"Increased activity following summer vacations, but several postponements as well. Clients still unsure about the economy and business costs (e.g., healthcare)." (Professional, Scientific & Technical Services)

"The federal government's spending is increasing greatly as agencies execute their final budgets and utilize fiscal year 2013 appropriated funds prior to their expiration on September 30th. This has caused a major increase in procurement activity for goods and services. Budgets are uncertain for fiscal year 2014, so some items requiring funding in future years are not being purchased." (Public Administration)

"Business has leveled off — not much in the way of growth." (Retail Trade)

"Some pick-up in sequential sales growth, but still flat with last year." (Wholesale Trade)

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