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COVID-19 continues to damage the US economy

Economic activity in the US economy shrank again in May due to the corona crisis, but slightly less than in April. This is evident from indicators for the industry and services sector by market researcher Markit.

The Markit index that measures business activity, the purchasing manager index, for the US industry this month is 39.8. In April, a score of 36.1 was measured. A level of 50 or more indicates growth, below that shrinkage. Economists generally assumed a score of 39.5.

The index for the services sector, including retail, hospitality and aviation, recorded 36.9 versus 26.7 a month earlier. Here, an average of 32.3 was expected. The composite index went up to 36.4 from April 27.

Industrial activity around the American city of Philadelphia will continue to shrink strongly in May, although the decline is less dramatic than in April. According to the Federal Reserve of Philadelphia, the so-called Philly Fed index, which reflects activity, is down from minus 43.1 this month to minus 56.6 last month.

Economists generally calculated a reading of minus 40 for the indicator. Due to the crisis and the measures to tackle the virus outbreak, many companies in and around Philadelphia have come to a standstill.

Sales of existing homes in the United States fell sharply again in April. That reported the American association of brokers.

Sales decreased by 17.8 percent on a monthly basis, the strongest decline since July 2010. Economists generally assumed a 19.9 percent decline. In March, sales fell by 8.5 percent.

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