Global factory PMI leaps to 39-month high

LONDON, Nov 2 (Reuters) - Global factory business activity grew at its fastest pace in 39 months in October as the output index soared to a level not seen for over 5 years and employment approached stabilisation, a survey showed on Monday.

The global index, produced by JP Morgan with research and supply management organisations, jumped to 54.4 last month from 53.0 in September. [ID:nL2338372]

Meanwhile, the output index soared to 58.4 in October from 55.5 in September, the highest reading since July 2004, buoyed by growth in the United States, Japan, China and the UK.

“October saw the global PMI resume its upward trend, following a pause in September,” said David Hensley, a director at JP Morgan. “New orders increased at a solid clip and the labour market neared stabilisation, both positive indications regarding the sustainability of the rebound in the sector.”

The new orders index edged down to 56.9 in October from 57.0, but indicating a strong pace of growth. The employment index rose to 49.7, just shy of the 50.0 mark that divides growth from contraction, and higher than September’s 47.3.

Earlier data, coming after buoyant growth in Asian PMIs, showed the euro zone’s manufacturing sector expanded for the first time in 17 months, while in Britain the sector grew at its fastest pace in two years. The Institute for Supply Management said the U.S. manufacturing sector grew in October for the third consecutive month and at its fastest pace since April 2006, beating expectations. The global index combines survey data from countries including the United States, Japan, Germany, France, Britain, China and Russia.

Reporting by Jonathan Cable; Editing by Ruth Pitchford