The second and final reading of the Markit U.S. manufacturing index totaled 53.9 in December, down from 54.8 in November, the privately run firm said Friday. The index registered a preliminary 53.7 in December. Readings over 50 indicate growth, but the index is now at its lowest point since January 2013. Markit said worries about a weak global economy has tugged the index lower. The rate of hiring also slowed to its softest pace since July, though companies are still hiring.
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