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BEIJING, July 24 Activity in China's factory
sector expanded at its fastest pace in 18 months in July, a
preliminary HSBC survey showed on Thursday, as a raft of
government stimulus measures kicked in.
The HSBC/Markit Flash China Manufacturing Purchasing
Managers' Index rose to 52.0 in July from June's final reading
of 50.7, beating a forecast of 51.0 in a Reuters poll.
It was the highest reading since January 2013, and above the
50-point level that separates growth in activity from
contraction for the second consecutive month.
A sub-index measuring new orders, a gauge of demand at home
and abroad, hit a 18-month high of 53.7, while the sub-index for
output also rose to a 16-month high in June.
The final Markit/HSBC manufacturing PMI for July is due on
China's economy grew slightly faster than expected in the
second quarter as a burst of government stimulus paid dividends,
but analysts said Beijing will likely need to offer further
support to meet its growth target of around 7.5 percent for
(Reporting By Xiaoyi Shao and Koh Gui Qing; Editing by Kim