Irish services sector keeps up rapid expansion in January

Ireland’s services sector expanded at close to its fastest pace in eight years in January, a survey showed on Wednesday, although the rapid growth in new orders slowed somewhat.

The Investec Purchasing Managers’ Index of activity in the services sector, which covers businesses from banks to hotels, came in at 62.5, just short of December’s 62.6 – the highest reading since February 2007.

The new business subindex was 62.8, its lowest level since August.

“Taken together with Monday’s Manufacturing PMI report, this release shows a solid start to 2015 for a sizeable proportion of the private sector in Ireland,” Investec Ireland chief economist Philip O’Sullivan said.

A related survey on manufacturing released on Monday showed the slowest rate of growth in the sector since last May.

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