Beijing, April 1: The purchasing managers’ index (PMI) for China‘s manufacturing sector rose to 50.3 percent in March, up from 50.2 percent in February, authorities said Tuesday.

It is the first month-on-month rise since November, Xinhua cited from a statement jointly released by the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) and the China Federation of Logistics and Purchasing.

A reading below 50 indicates contraction, while above 50 signals expansion.

The index shows China’s manufacturing sector is stable, said Zhao Qinghe, a senior analyst with the NBS.

Zhao said the rise was due to resuming of production and business after the Spring Festival holiday.

In March, the sub-index for production stood at 52.7 percent, up 0.1 percentage points from February. The sub-index for new orders also gained 0.1 percentage points to 50.6 percent, the statement said.