The U.S. services sector grew in February at its fastest pace in more than two years, according to an industry report released on Wednesday.

The Institute for Supply Management said its services index rose to 53.0 from 50.5 in January. The reading was the highest since December 2007 and well above the 51.0 median forecast of 71 economists surveyed by Reuters.

A reading above 50 indicates expansion in the services sector, which accounts for the majority of U.S. employment.

The index's employment component jumped to 48.6 from 44.6 the prior month while the prices paid component fell to 60.4 from 61.2.

(Reporting by Steven C. Johnson and Edward Krudy; Editing by James Dalgleish)