NEW YORK (Reuters) - An index on new orders in the U.S. Mid-Atlantic region advanced to its strongest level in almost three decades in March, suggesting an acceleration in local business activities, Philadelphia Federal Reserve data released on Thursday showed.


The Philadelphia Fed's new orders index edged up to 38.6 this month, which was the highest since 39.4 in December 1987. In February, this gauge stood at 38.0.


(Reporting by Richard Leong; Editing by Chizu Nomiyama)