The headline HSBC Composite Output Index posted 53.0 in July, down from June's 16-month high of 53.8.
The latest figure was indicative of a solid expansion in private sector activity, and was the second highest reading since February 2013. Output growth accelerated to a 17-month peak in the manufacturing sector, while activity rose for a third consecutive month at services companies.
Adjusted for seasonal factors, the HSBC Services Business Activity Index stood at 52.2 in July, down from June?s 17-month peak of 54.4. The latest reading indicated a third successive monthly expansion and was consistent with a modest rise in business activity. However, the pace of output growth slowed from June and was below the long-run series average. A number of panellists associated rises in activity with improving demand. Among the six monitored sub-sectors, only Hotels & Restaurants and Transport & Storage companies registered reductions in activity.