U.S. business gauge posts first contraction since 2013 on virus

UNITED STATES business activity shrank in February due to constraints caused by the Covid-19 outbreak that originated in China and has since spread to other countries including South Korea, Japan and Singapore, among others. / BLOOMBERG FILE PHOTO/CHUNG SUNG-JUN
UNITED STATES business activity shrank in February due to constraints caused by the Covid-19 outbreak that originated in China and has since spread to other countries including South Korea, Japan and Singapore, among others. / BLOOMBERG FILE PHOTO/CHUNG SUNG-JUN
WASHINGTON – United States business activity shrank in February for the first time since 2013 as the coronavirus hit supply chains and made firms hesitant to place orders, a warning sign that the outbreak is starting to dent the world’s largest economy. The IHS Markit purchasing managers’ index measuring composite output at factories and service…

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