Flash PMI survey data showed business activity and new order growth slowing in May, with hiring and backlogs of work likewise exhibiting slower rates of increase. The survey also indicated that companies have become less optimistic about the outlook. The composite output index dropped to an 18-month low of 54.1 in May from 55.1 in April. The services Purchasing Managers Index came in at 53.9, while the score was expected to remain at 54.7. The manufacturing PMI slid more-than-expected to 55.5 from 56.2 in April.