China’s official manufacturing purchasing managers index (PMI), the bellwether of large industrial firms, fell to 49.7 in August from 50.0 in July.
The index dropped below the benchmark level of 50 for the first time since February this year.
The Caixin flash PMI, representing a group of small and medium private enterprises, also fell to 47.1 in August, from the final reading of 47.8 in July.
"The decline reflects faltering sentiment amid sluggish economic growth and the recent stock market turmoil…Today’s reading suggests that manufacturing activities in China remain weak," writes a research report by ANZ.
The bank revised its GDP growth projection to 6.4% in the third quarter.