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Chicago PMI moves up to 60.4 in Sept.

Chicago PMI moves up to 60.4 in Sept. (by Greg Robb)

WASHINGTON (MarketWatch) -- Manufacturing activity in the Chicago region expanded at a more rapid pace in September, according to media reports of the Institute for Supply Management-Chicago Inc.'s activity index released on Friday. The Chicago purchasing managers index rose to 60.4 from 56.5 in August. The rise was unexpected. Analysts were looking for a slight decline. Readings over 50 indicate overall business expansion. The Chicago PMI is the last of a series of regional indicators that give clues to the national Institute for Supply Management manufacturers' survey for September to be released on Monday. Based on other regional readings, economists expect the September ISM manufacturing composite to slow a bit more to 50.5 from an August reading of 50.6. This is down from an average reading of 58.8 in the first six months of the year.