While activity in the mid-Atlantic region's manufacturing sector has continued to decrease in April, a report released by the Federal Reserve Bank of Philadelphia on Thursday showed that the sector has contracted less severely.

The Philly Fed said its index of activity in the sector rose to a negative 24.4 in April from a negative 35.0 in March, with a negative reading indicating a contraction in the sector. Economists had expected a more modest increase to a negative 32.0.

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