BEIJING Aug 5 China's services sector grew at its slowest pace in nearly nine years in July as new business slowed to a trickle, a private survey showed on Tuesday, indicating a recovery in the broader economy is still fragile.
The services purchasing managers' index(PMI) compiled by HSBC/Markit fell to 50.0 in July from 15-month high of 53.1 in June, the lowest reading since November 2005 when the data collection began.
The survey pointed to a stagnation of service activity as a reading above 50 in PMI surveys indicates an expansion in activity while one below the threshold points to a contraction.
In a sign that companies have grown more reluctant to spend, a sub-index measuring new business growth hit a 68-month low of 50.3 in July.
(Reporting By Xiaoyi Shao and Koh Gui Qing; Editing by Kim Coghill)