US factories expand at slower pace in April

American factories grew for the eighth straight month in April but at a slower pace than in March.

The Institute for Supply Management said Monday that its manufacturing index slipped to 54.8 from 57.2 in March and 57.7 in February. Anything above 50 signals that manufacturing is growing.

New orders and hiring grew more slowly in April, but production and export orders sped up.

American factories have bounced back after being hurt in early 2016 and late 2015 by cutbacks in the energy industry, a reaction to low oil prices, and a strong dollar, which makes U.S. products costlier in foreign markets