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Japan's Manufacturing Growth At 7-Month High

Japan's manufacturing sector operating conditions improved at the fastest pace in seven months in March, a survey by Markit Economics revealed Friday.

The seasonally adjusted Markit/JMMA purchasing managers' index rose to 51.1 in March from 50.5 in February. This was the highest score in seven months. A PMI reading above 50 indicates expansion of the sector.

Manufacturing output rose for a third successive month in March, with the rate of expansion the sharpest since October 2011. Growth in production was underpinned by strong increase in new orders.

The rate of new business growth in March was the strongest for seven months. This contrasted with a negligible rise in new export business, which was affected by adverse exchange rate factors and weak demand from China.

Manufacturing firms reduced staff numbers for the first time since June 2011, the survey report said.

by RTT Staff Writer

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