The pace of growth in the nation's service sector rose to a 14-month high last month, marking 51 months of continued expansion, the Institute of Supply Management reported Thursday.

The trade group's index of service-sector businesses, which together account for nearly 90 percent of the economy, climbed to 60.7 from 59.7 in May, including gains in business activity, new orders, and employment. Results above 50 indicate growth.

The sector's top-performing industries last month included construction, real estate, rental and leasing, and arts, entertainment, and recreation.

"The overall indication in June is continued economic growth in the non-manufacturing sector at a faster pace than in May," Anthony Nieves, chair of the group's business survey committee, said in a statement.

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Published on: Jul 5, 2007