U.S. factory activity shrank for the third straight month in August.
The Institute for Supply Management, a trade group of purchasing managers, said Tuesday its index of manufacturing activity ticked down to 49.6. That's down from 49.7 in July and the lowest reading in three years. A reading below 50 indicates contraction.
The report followed other data showing manufacturing has slowed overseas. A measure of factory activity in China fell to its lowest level in more than three years last month. And manufacturing in Europe has also stagnated in the face of the region's financial crisis.
U.S. factories have been a key source of jobs and growth since the recession ended in June 2009. But the sector has shown signs of weakness in recent months.
Read more at OregonLive.com.