BEIJING, Feb. 3 (Xinhua) -- Business activity in China's non-manufacturing sector continued to expand in January, as the upcoming Spring Festival drove up retails during the period, an official monthly survey showed Sunday.
The Purchasing Managers Index (PMI) of the non-manufacturing sector came in at 56.2 percent in January, up 0.1 percentage points from December, the China Federation of Logistics and Purchasing (CFLP) said in an online statement.
This marked the fourth straight month of rises, said the CFLP.
A PMI reading above 50 percent indicates expansion from the previous month, while a reading below 50 percent indicates contraction.
The sub-index of intermediate input prices logged the biggest gain of 4.4 percentage points to hit 58.2 percent in January.
Railways transportation, hotel, catering, furnishing and mail services saw the index of intermediate input prices reaching beyond 60 percent, while those of water transportation, eco-environment protection, public facilities management, Internet, software, real estate and wholesale range between 50 percent and 60 percent during the month.
Cai Jin, vice chairman of the CFLP, alerted the businesses of possible cost-driven inflationary pressures in the statement.
The sub-index for new export orders retreated 0.6 percentage point from a month earlier to 53.7 percent, while the new export orders saw a slight climb of 0.1 percentage point to 52.6 percent.
Other sub-indices, such as in-hand orders, employment and business outlook declined from a month earlier.
The figures followed Friday's release of the manufacturing sector PMI, which put the index at 50.4 percent, a sign of steady growth trend in China's economy.
The CFLP's non-manufacturing PMI is based on a survey of about 1,200 companies in 27 industries, including transportation, real estate, catering and software development.
Wind power now No.3 energy resource
Blackberry maker changes name, unveils new phones
China caps first 3G nuclear plant
New Zealand moves to restore trust
Lenovo ready to challenge mobile industry leaders
Airbus has big hopes for big plane