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WASHINGTON (AP) -- A private trade group says the U.S. manufacturing sector expanded in May, marking the 10th consecutive month of growth.

The Institute for Supply Management, a trade group of purchasing executives, says its manufacturing index dipped to 59.7 in May from 60.4 in April. A level above 50 indicates expansion.

Economists polled by Thomson Reuters had expected the index to dip slightly to a reading of 59.

New orders, a gauge of future production, were unchanged at 65.7.

ISM says its employment index, which measures employers\' willingness to hire, rose 1.3 percentage points to 59.8.

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