Non-manufacturing economic activity increased in June, according to a release from the Institute for Supply Management, defying the expectation of economists who predicted a fall.
Economic activity in the non-manufacturing sector grew to 57.4 in June, 0.5 point above May's number. Economists forecast a decline of 0.4 points, expecting the June figure to sink to 56.5, according to a survey from Thomson Reuters.
"The non-manufacturing sector continued to reflect strength for the month of June," said Anthony Nieves, chair of the ISM survey committee, in a statement.
"The majority of respondents' comments are positive about business conditions and the overall economy."
Sixteen of the 17 industries surveyed reported growth in June, leaving "other services" as the only industry experiencing contraction. June's number marks a year-over-year gain of 0.9 points.
"Overall business is trending up and we have a positive outlook for 2017," a survey respondent from the retail trade said.
The business activity index increased by 0.1 in June, representing 95 consecutive months of growth in business activity.
The new orders index rose significantly to 60.8, up 2.8 points from May to June.
The employment index fell 2 points in June to 55.8, despite 14 surveyed industries reporting increased employment.
A reading above 50 indicates expansion in the service sector, and a reading below 50 indicates contraction.