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Manufacturing growth

MANUFACTURING in the United States and Europe accelerated in December but growth in China and India slowed to more sustainable levels.

Powerhouses Germany and France continued to lead the 17-nation single currency zone's industrial recovery.

But output also grew faster in much of the area's smaller economies -- where debt concerns continued to drive financial markets on the first trading day of 2011 -- as export orders revived following steady declines in the value of the euro. The Markit Eurozone PMI, which records manufacturing activity across the major euro-area economies, rose to 57.1 in December, revised higher from a preliminary reading of 56.8.