March 1, 2017 / 3:53 AM / 5 months ago

China February official manufacturing PMI rises to 51.6, beats forecasts

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FILE PHOTO - Workers direct a crane lifting newly made steel bars at a factory in Dalian, Liaoning province, China, October 13, 2015.China Daily/File Photo

BEIJING (Reuters) - Activity in China's manufacturing sector expanded faster than expected in February, an official survey showed on Wednesday.

The official Purchasing Managers' Index (PMI) rose to a three-month high of 51.6 in February, compared with the previous month's 51.3, and above the 50-point mark that separates growth from contraction on a monthly basis.

Analysts polled by Reuters had predicted a reading of 51.1, pointing to a modest expansion as China's industrial firms continued to benefit from higher sales prices and a recovery in demand fueled by a construction boom.

Reporting by Beijing Monitoring Desk; Editing by Kim Coghill

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