BEIJING -- The purchasing managers' index (PMI) for China's non-manufacturing sector came in at 55.7 in December, down from 56.4 in November, the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) said Thursday.
A reading above 50 indicates expansion, while a reading below it reflects contraction.
The non-manufacturing PMI has remained above 50 for 10 consecutive months, data from the NBS showed.
China's non-manufacturing sector sustained sound recovery momentum as the country's economy continued to rebound steadily, said Zhao Qinghe, senior statistician at the NBS, while analyzing the December reading.
In December, the service sector saw a slower recovery, with the sub-index for business activities standing at 54.8.
The figure was down from 55.7 in November but still remained at a relatively elevated level, Zhao said.
Meanwhile, the sub-index tracking business activity expectations hit 60.1, remaining above 60 for the sixth month in a row, showing that most service enterprises were upbeat about the steady recovery of the sector.
A breakdown of the data showed the sub-indexes for business activities of civil aviation, telecommunications and satellite transmission, as well as financial services, remained above 60, Zhao added.
The construction industry continued its robust growth, as the sub-index for business activities stood at 60.7, up from 60.5 in November.
China has taken multi-pronged measures to mitigate the economic fallout from the COVID-19 pandemic. Building on earlier efforts to advance the resumption of production, the country has ramped up tax and fee reductions and provided firms with low-cost loans to help them tide over difficulties.
Thursday's data also showed that the PMI for China's manufacturing sector came in at 51.9 in December, down from 52.1 last month.