This Day On The Street
Continue to site right-arrow
This account is pending registration confirmation. Please click on the link within the confirmation email previously sent you to complete registration.
Need a new registration confirmation email? Click here
TheStreet Open House

Service Sector Expands in February

Stocks in this article: ^DJI ^GSPC

TEMPE, Ariz. ( TheStreet) -- Growth in the nation's service sector picked up the pace last month, continuing an upbeat trend that's seen that stratum of the economy expand now for the second straight month.

The Institute for Supply Management said its non-manufacturing index, which tracks strength in the service sector, rose to a seasonally adjusted reading at 53 in February. That bettered the 50.5 mark posted in January, as well as consensus estimates from calling for a reading of 51. The February pace also rose to its best showing in over two years.

A showing above 50 typically denotes expansion and growth in the industry, while a result below that mark suggests contraction. The index is created using data from purchasing and supply executives around the country.

The report suggested improvement on several fronts, with new orders, production, deliveries and new export orders all showing upticks.

Though continuing to show contraction, a specific reading on service-sector employment also showed gains, registering 48.6% last month after hitting 44.6% in January.

The employment news also echoes earlier reports showing declining private sector job losses and layoff announcements throughout the economy. The government is expected to release its February jobs report on Friday, with many anticipating nonfarm payrolls to drop again and the unemployment rate to edge higher.

An earlier assessment by ISM showed continued growth in the manufacturing sector, albeit at a slower pace .

Stocks continued trading higher after the report, with the Dow Jones Industrial Average adding 45 points, or 0.4%, to 10,451 and the S&P 500 gaining 5 points, or 0.4%, to 1123.

-- Written by Sung Moss in New York

Check Out Our Best Services for Investors

Action Alerts PLUS

Jim Cramer and Stephanie Link reveal their investment tactics while giving advanced notice before every trade.

Product Features:
  • $2.5+ million portfolio
  • Large-cap and dividend focus
  • Intraday trade alerts from Cramer
Quant Ratings

Access the tool that DOMINATES the Russell 2000 and the S&P 500.

Product Features:
  • Buy, hold, or sell recommendations for over 4,300 stocks
  • Unlimited research reports on your favorite stocks
  • A custom stock screener
Stocks Under $10

Jim Cramer's protégé, David Peltier, uncovers low dollar stocks with extraordinary upside potential that are flying under Wall Street's radar.

Product Features:
  • Model portfolio
  • Stocks trading below $10
  • Intraday trade alerts
Try it NOW
Try it NOW
Try it NOW

Check Out Our Best Services for Investors

Dividend Stock Advisor

Jim Cramer's protégé, David Peltier, identifies the best of breed dividend stocks that will pay a reliable AND significant income stream.

Product Features:
  • Diversified model portfolio of dividend stocks
  • Updates with exact steps to take - BUY, HOLD, SELL
Trifecta Stocks

Every recommendation goes through 3 layers of intense scrutiny—quantitative, fundamental and technical analysis—to maximize profit potential and minimize risk.

Product Features:
  • Model Portfolio
  • Intra Day Trade alerts
  • Access to Quant Ratings
Options Profits

Our options trading pros provide over 100 monthly option trading ideas and strategies to help you become a well-seasoned trader.

Product Features:
  • Actionable options commentary and news
  • Real-time trading community
Try it NOW
Try it NOW
Try it NOW
To begin commenting right away, you can log in below using your Disqus, Facebook, Twitter, OpenID or Yahoo login credentials. Alternatively, you can post a comment as a "guest" just by entering an email address. Your use of the commenting tool is subject to multiple terms of service/use and privacy policies - see here for more details.
Submit an article to us!


DOW 17,191.37 -195.84 -1.13%
S&P 500 2,002.16 -27.39 -1.35%
NASDAQ 4,637.9940 -43.5030 -0.93%

Partners Compare Online Brokers

Free Reports

Free Newsletters from TheStreet

My Subscriptions:

After the Bell

Before the Bell

Booyah! Newsletter

Midday Bell

TheStreet Top 10 Stories

Winners & Losers

Register for Newsletters
Top Rated Stocks Top Rated Funds Top Rated ETFs