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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

Service Sector Grows for 3rd Straight Month

The country's service sector grew for the third month running in October, fuelled by a survey-record decline in charges, the VTB Capital Purchasing Managers Index showed on Thursday.

The headline PMI climbed to 54.3 in October — its highest since September 2008 — from 53.0 the previous month.

The index stayed above the 50 mark that separates expansion from contraction in a sign that Russia's economy is on the recovery path after its first recession in a decade.

The overall improvement in the service sector has slowed down job cuts. The employment index rose to its highest in a year, even though it remained in contraction territory.

"Business activity accelerated due to rising new business and growing clientele in all subsectors except transport and storage," said Svetlana Aslanova, an analyst at VTB.

"Being cautiously optimistic, we believe that the Russian services sector has embarked on a recovery path," she added.