The manufacturing sector expanded strongly in October, with a fourth consecutive month of growth boding well for the overall economy in the final quarter of the year, the Institute for Supply Management reported recently.

Its manufacturing index rose to 57 last month from 53.7 in September. An index reading above 50 indicates expansion; one below 50 indicates that manufacturing activity is contracting. From March through June, the manufacturing index was below 50. Analysts had anticipated a reading of 55.5 for October.