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LONDON (Reuters) - Output growth across emerging markets was subdued in September, making the average for the third quarter the lowest since early 2009, while expectations fell for the first time since June, a survey showed on Wednesday.
The composite HSBC Emerging Markets index for services and manufacturing edged higher to 50.8 in September from 50.7 in August, pointing to a slow recovery as outstanding business continued to fall and new business grew feebly, HSBC said.
After touching a five-month high in August, the HSBC Emerging Markets Future Output Index, measuring business expectations, pared earlier gains and was only slightly above the historic 18-month record low hit in June.
"The September PMIs show economic conditions in emerging markets are showing marginal improvement, although the data remains disappointing overall," said Pablo Goldberg, HSBC's global head of emerging markets research, in a statement.
China's output growth slowed slightly to 51.2 but was above 50 for the second consecutive month.
But a decline in Indian output was the fastest since March 2009, and in the manufacturing sector companies cut their workforces for the first time since February 2012.
Business activity in Brazil crawled over the neutral threshold of 50.0 to return to growth in September after a two-month contraction, while growth in Russia slowed, as manufacturing rounded off the weakest quarter since the last one in 2009.
Manufacturing business expectations dimmed in Brazil and India but rose in Russia.
However, manufacturing in emerging Europe was looking more upbeat.
Poland's manufacturing sector saw a solid increase in new orders which drove output growth, and firms expanded workforces at the fastest rate in over six years on the back of expanding production. The Czech Republic posted a strong increase in manufacturing business sentiment as output growth kept up its strong pace.
Manufacturing looked up in Turkey where output and new order intakes accelerated at their fastest pace since January.
"CEE recovery is on track. While Turkey surprises to the upside, we expect slowdown from here due to tighter financial conditions," said Murat Ulgen, HSBC's chief economist for central Europe and sub-Saharan Africa.
The HSBC survey collects data from purchasing managers at about 7,500 firms in 16 emerging markets. The index is calculated using data produced by Markit.
(Reporting by Julia Fioretti; Editing by Ruth Pitchford)