The nation's manufacturing sector continues to rebound, according to a monthly survey of the Federal Reserve Bank of Philadelphia.

The bank's regional business outlook survey released Thursday said its index of current activity surged from 23.8 in May to 28.9 in June. Economists expected a reading of 25.5.

"Current indicators suggest that growth in the region's manufacturing sector is continuing," the bank said in a statement. "Manufacturing executives remain generally optimistic about continued growth in their sector over the next six months."

Shipments, new orders and unfilled orders all rose from May levels. And for the 13th straight month, the percentage of companies reporting an increase in activity surpassed that of those reporting a decrease.

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In addition, some 26% of the companies surveyed reported increased hiring, versus 9% reporting lower employment. The employment sub-index, however, slipped from May's level.

The index measuring future activity also fell from 42.3 in May to 39.5 in June.

The survey, which was started in 1968, gathers information on the manufacturers with plants employing 100 or more people in eastern Pennsylvania, southern New Jersey, and Delaware.