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US manufacturing activity declined in April for the 15th straight month but the decline continues to slow.
"The decline in the manufacturing sector continues to moderate. After six consecutive months below the 40-percent mark, the (manufacturing index), driven by the new orders index at 47.2 percent, shows a significant improvement," the Institute for Supply Management's report said. "While this is a big step forward, there is still a large gap that must be closed before manufacturing begins to grow once again."
This runs parallel with a local report that indicates that the rate of decline in the Australian manufacturing is also slowing.