US: PMI Services Index

Wed Nov 04 08:45:00 CST 2015

Consensus Consensus Range Actual Previous
Level 54.8 54.4 to 55.3 54.8 55.1

Growth in Markit's U.S. service sector sample is slowing slightly, coming in at a final 54.8 vs the flash reading of 54.4 and vs September's final reading of 55.1. Details are soft with growth in new business at its slowest pace since January and with backlogs down for a third straight month.

Weakness in orders in turn is pulling down 12-month expectations which are near July's three-year low. Employment is described as modest with hiring at its slowest pace since February. Price readings are mute.

Despite the soft details, the service sector is still humming along solidly and helping to offset weakness in manufacturing. ISM's non-manufacturing report will be posted this morning at 10:00 a.m. ET.

Market Consensus Before Announcement
The services PMI has been solid but slowing, coming in at 54.4 for the flash reading with a slight bounce higher expected for the final reading to 54.8. New business growth eased to the slowest rate of the year in the flash reading for October, raising questions over how long the service sector can resist global slowing.

US Services Purchasing Managers' Index (PMI) is based on monthly questionnaire surveys collected from over 400 U.S. companies which provide a leading indication of what is happening in the private sector services economy. It is seasonally adjusted and is calculated from seven components, including New Business, Employment and Business Expectations.

Investors need to keep their fingers on the pulse of the economy because it indicates how various types of investments will perform. The Markit Services PMI provides advance insight into the services sector, which gives investors a better understanding of business conditions and valuable information about the economic backdrop of various markets. The stock market likes to see healthy economic growth which generally translates to higher corporate profits. The bond market prefers less rapid growth and is extremely sensitive to whether the economy is growing too quickly and causing potential inflationary pressures. The PMI data are also used by many Central Banks to help make interest rate decisions.

The Markit PMI Services Flash data give a detailed look at the services sector, the pace of growth and the direction of this sector. Since the service sector accounts for more than three-quarters of U.S. GDP, this report has a significant influence on the markets. In addition, its sub-indexes provide a picture of new business, employment, business expectations and prices.