U.S. factory activity expanded in July at the fastest pace in more than three years, the Institute for Supply Management reported Aug. 1.
ISM’s monthly manufacturing index rose to 57.1, the highest since April 2011, from 55.3 in June. Readings over 50 indicate growth.
The index was higher than the 56 reading forecast in a Bloomberg survey of economists.
Factories boosted output in response to increased purchases of automobiles and business equipment.
The survey’s production index rose to 61.2 from 60 in June, and its employment measure jumped to 58.2, the highest since June 2011, from 52.8.
Bloomberg News contributed to this story.