An independent measure of manufacturing activity showed improvement in operating conditions across China in October, but at the slowest pace since June.
The Caixin-Markit China manufacturing purchasing manager index (PMI) showed that China's enforcement of environmental policies, aimed at lowering pollution from large production plants, contributed to a sharp rise in input costs and weighed on performance.
Caixin China PMI
The manufacturing PMI for October held steady at September's reading of 51 points. Any reading above 50 indicates growth.
New orders rose at a slightly quicker pace, while production increased at the slowest rate for four months, the report said, while new export sales also rose at a modest pace following a marginal upturn in September.
Employment, however, fell as firms lowered workforce numbers to boost efficiency.
Production, however, increased only marginally in October, with the rate of growth the weakest in four months.