By Xavier Fontdegloria
The U.S. economy contracted again in September, albeit at a softer pace than in the previous month as demand recovered, according to a purchasing managers survey published Friday.
The S&P Global Flash Composite Output Index, which tracks activity in the manufacturing and services sectors, rose to 49.3 in September from 44.6 in August. The index suggests the economy contracted slightly over the month as it came in below the 50.0 no-change mark, but also indicates the pace of contraction eased compared with August.
The indicator has signaled contraction in activity for three consecutive months, a quarter that could be the weakest for the economy since the global financial crisis if the pandemic lockdowns of early 2020 are excluded, S&P Global chief business economist Chris Williamson said.
In September, output declined for both manufacturing and services, but in both cases the rate of…