Business activity in the U.S. Midwest grew much less than expected in May, as orders softened and employment weakened, a report showed on Tuesday.
The Institute for Supply Management-Chicago business barometer dropped to 56.6 in May, its lowest reading since November 2009. The reading was 67.6 in April, and economists had forecast a May reading of 62.6.
The employment component of the index fell to 60.8, from 63.7 in April. New orders sank to 53.5 from 66.3. A reading above 50 indicates expansion in the regional economy.
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