TOKYO -- The Nikkei Singapore Purchasing Managers' Index, or PMI, rose to 52.6 in April from 52.2 in March, hitting the highest reading in five months. April's growth was supported by expansions in output and new orders.
A reading above 50 indicates economic expansion, while a reading below 50 points toward contraction.
Bernard Aw, an economist at IHS Markit, which compiles the survey, said: "Firms raised selling prices modestly, with anecdotal evidence suggesting that greater competition has limited the extent to which businesses pass on higher costs to consumers. The squeeze on margins may affect future hiring and investment plans even if there were signs of building capacity pressures."
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