BEIJING--The China Caixin manufacturing purchasing managers' index, a private gauge of nationwide factory activity, rose to 51.9 in December from 50.9 in November--avoiding contractionary territory for a sixth straight month--Caixin Media Co. and research firm Markit said Tuesday.

The figure marked the strongest upturn in Chinese manufacturing conditions since January 2013.

"The Chinese manufacturing economy continued to improve in December, with the majority of subindices looking optimistic," said Zhengsheng Zhong, an economist at CEBM Group.

"However, it is still to be seen if the stabilization of the economy is consolidated due to uncertainties in whether restocking and consumer price rises can be sustainable," he said.

The rise in the private gauge followed a slowdown in an official measure of factory activity. China's official manufacturing PMI came in at 51.4 in December, compared with 51.7 in November, according to data from the National Bureau of Statistics.

The Caixin Manufacturing PMI is based on data compiled from monthly replies to questionnaires sent to purchasing executives at more than 400 manufacturing companies.

--Pei Li

(END) Dow Jones Newswires

January 02, 2017 21:15 ET (02:15 GMT)

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