September 30, 2017 / 1:26 AM / a year ago

China September official services PMI rises to 55.4, highest since May 2014

BEIJING (Reuters) - Growth in China’s services sector rose to the highest level since May 2014 in September, an official survey showed on Saturday, marking the first rise in three months for the indicator.

The official non-manufacturing Purchasing Managers’ Index (PMI) rose to 55.4 from 53.4 in August. The September reading was the highest level since May 2014, when it was 55.5.

The services sector accounts for over half of China’s economy, with rising wages giving Chinese consumers more spending power.

China’s leaders are counting on growth in services and consumption to rebalance their economic growth model from its heavy reliance on investment and exports.

China posted stronger-than-expected economic growth of 6.9 percent in the first half, fuelled by a year-long construction boom, resurgent exports and robust retail sales.

Reporting by Elias Glenn; Editing by Richard Pullin

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