In China, profits at industrial firms shrank at a slower pace last month compared to April’s big slump. That’s as easing COVID restrictions allowed companies to resume activity in major manufacturing hubs. Bloomberg reports that industrial profits fell 6.5% in May from a year earlier, narrowing from April’s 8.5% drop, data from the National Bureau of Statistics showed Monday. In the first five months of the year, profits grew 1%, slower than the 3.5% growth recorded through the January-to-April period. Factories have struggled during the latest outbreak as lockdowns roiled production. The impact of restrictions in May was less damaging than in April as many cities began to ease up on their strictest measures, though the recovery continues to be slow as officials remain vigilant about curbing outbreaks.