The United States’ manufacturing sector slipped into negative territory, recording its first month of contraction in three years, as well as its worst result in a key index since June 2009.
Dow Jones reports that a result in the Institute for Supply Management’s survey of 48.6 was due to factors including a strong US dollar, low commodity prices and weak international demand.
Any result under 50 indicates contraction.
Despite the weak overall result, much of the rest of the economy is performing strongly, with the ISM services index result averaging 61.3 for the 12 months to October.
“Traditionally, the manufacturing sector has been the canary in the coal mine when it comes to slowing growth,” said Brett Ryan, a U.S. economist at Deutsche Bank Securities Inc., told Bloomberg.
“To what extent does this bleed over into other sectors of the economy — that’s yet to be seen.”