U.S. manufacturing picked up slightly in May, though the pace was still sluggish, a survey showed Monday, suggesting the sector may be a drag on the economy in the second quarter.
Financial data firm Markit said its final Manufacturing Purchasing Managers Index (PMI) rose to 52.3 from 52.1 in April, better than the preliminary reading of 51.9. A reading above 50 indicates expansion.
Growth in output eased for the third-straight month, with the subindex slipping to 52.7 from 53.7, while the pace of hiring in the sector fell to a six-month low.
"The survey paints a downbeat picture of U.S. manufacturing business conditions. Output, order books and employment are all growing modestly, suggesting the sector is at risk of stalling," said Chris Williamson, Markit chief economist.