BEIJING — China’s service sector activity rose in December for the second month running, an official monthly survey showed on Jan 1.
The purchasing managers’ index (PMI) for the non-manufacturing sector rebounded to 54.1 in December from 53.9 in November, according to a report released jointly by the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) and the China Federation of Logistics and Purchasing.
The index was 53.8 in October and 54 in September.
A reading above 50 indicates expansion, while a reading below 50 represents contraction.
The sub-index for the construction industry fell to 57.1 in December from 58.9 in November, while the sub-index for services rose to 53.3 in December from 52.6 in November.
The new order sub-index for the entire non-manufacturing sector rose to 50.5 in December from 50.1 in November.
NBS analyst Zhao Qinghe said the non-manufacturing sector has been improving since the country mapped a series of measures to boost the service sector and upgrade industries.
Wu Wei, an analyst with China Logistics Information Center, said the service sector has been running in a healthy way and playing a more important role in providing jobs.
He said construction activities will continue to climb in 2015 with China’s urbanization efforts and the “Belt and Road Initiatives” to revive the ancient Silk Road from China to other countries.
But Wu warned against deflation, believing falling prices of service products and slumping international commodity prices may cause deflationary pressure.
A cooling manufacturing sector and property downturn dragged China’s economic growth to 7.3 percent in the third quarter in 2014, down from 7.5 percent in the second quarter and 7.4 percent in the first quarter.
The PMI samples 1,200 non-manufacturing enterprises of various sizes nationwide. It tracks activity in sectors including services, construction, software, aviation, railway transport and real estate.