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Economy cools off at end of 2021, ISM finds, as firms cope with shortages and omicron

Mount Equity Group Tokyo Japan > News > Markets > Economy cools off at end of 2021, ISM finds, as firms cope with shortages and omicron

The numbers: CVS, Citibank, Wal-Mart and other service-oriented companies that dominate the economy grew slower in December, a survey showed, just as omicron began to add fresh stress on a U.S. recovery already suffering from widespread labor and supply shortages.

The Institute for Supply Management’s services index dropped to 62% last month from a record 69.1% in November. Readings above 50% signal expansion and numbers above 60% are considered exceptional.

“It’s still reflective of a very strong rate of growth,” said Anthony Nieves, chairman of the survey. “It’s a matter of leveling off” from very high levels in the past few months.

Read: Sticky inflation, bigger paychecks, fading stimulus – how the U.S. economy is shaping up for 2022

Economists polled by The Wall Street Journal forecast the index to fall to 66.8%.

The lower ISM reading in December doesn’t capture much…

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