clear
Wednesday May 6th, 2015 12:37PM

Fed survey: Economy showing improvement across US

By The Associated Press
WASHINGTON (AP) -- A Federal Reserve survey shows the U.S. economy strengthening over the past two months in areas from manufacturing and construction to retail sales and bank lending.<br /> <br /> Seven of the Fed's 12 regions - Boston, New York, Richmond, Chicago, Minneapolis, Dallas and San Francisco - reported "moderate" growth during the early spring, while the remaining five described growth as "modest," according to the Beige Book survey released Wednesday.<br /> <br /> Retail sales were reviving, helped by pent-up demand for new cars after the harsh winter, the survey found. Manufacturing was expanding in all regions, along with lending. One weakness was home sales, held back in large part by a tight supply of available homes.<br /> <br /> The Beige Book is based on anecdotal reports from businesses and will be considered along with other data when Fed policymakers meet June 17-18.<br /> <br /> Nothing in the report is likely to alter the widespread view that the Fed thinks the economy is reviving after a winter slowdown.<br /> <br /> "The picture painted by the collective anecdotes in today's Beige Book may not illustrate robust growth, but it suggests the economy is at least moving in the right direction," said Dana Saporta, an economist at Credit Suisse.<br /> <br /> Jennifer Lee, senior economist at BMO Capital Markets, said it marked the 24th time out of 28 reports going back to early 2011 that the Fed has used "modest," "moderate" or often both words to describe the economy.<br /> <br /> Economists generally believe the Fed in June will pare its pace of monthly bond purchases by another $10 billion and pledge to keep its key short-term interest rate at a record low near zero for a "considerable" period after its bond purchases end.<br /> <br /> Beginning in December, the Fed has been reducing its bond purchases, which were designed to keep long-term rates low to spur spending and economic growth. The purchases, now at $45 billion a month, will likely be phased out entirely this fall.<br /> <br /> The Beige Book suggests that despite the spring rebound in activity, inflation remains contained and wage pressures subdued. Low inflation has given the Fed the leeway to keep interest rates exceptionally low to try to boost growth and lower unemployment.<br /> <br /> The Fed survey said the job market in much of the country has improved since its last Beige Book. Cleveland and Chicago reported increased demand for temporary workers. Several districts reported that employers were having trouble finding skilled workers.<br /> <br /> Manufacturing activity expanded in all 12 districts, with robust gains reported in the Boston, New York, Atlanta and Kansas City districts. Growth was especially strong at factories connected to the auto, aerospace and metal industries.<br /> <br /> Two-thirds of the Fed's districts reported rising demand for bank loans. Particular strength was seen in New York and San Francisco. Demand for auto loans was strong, coinciding with reports of robust new-car sales.<br /> <br /> But the Boston, New York and Kansas City regions reported that home sales were being held back by low or dwindling supplies of available homes. Other regions also described availability as low.<br /> <br /> Fed Chair Janet Yellen has said that the Fed is monitoring conditions for any signs that the housing recovery is faltering.
© Copyright 2015 AccessNorthGa.com
All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed without permission.
Judge denies motions to move, delay Tsarnaev trial
Lawyers for Boston Marathon bombing suspect Dzhokhar Tsarnaev asked a federal appeals court Wednesday to overturn a judge's decision to not move his upcoming trial out of state.
10:02PM ( 4 months ago )
High court to adopt electronic filing of cases
The Supreme Court is belatedly developing an electronic filing system similar to those used in courts around the country, Chief Justice John Roberts said Wednesday in his annual end-of-year report.
7:57PM ( 4 months ago )
Storm brings snow, cold to West for New Year's
A blustery winter storm dumped snow and ice across the West on Wednesday, making driving treacherous in the mountains from California to the Rockies and forcing residents and party-goers in some usually sun-soaked cities to bundle up for a frosty New Year's.
5:19PM ( 4 months ago )
U.S. News
State DOT awards $48M contract for NE Ga. road project
The state Department of Transportation has awarded a $47.8 million contract for nine miles of work on a northeast Georgia road.
9:37AM ( 4 months ago )
Business News
Grass fire impacts rush hour traffic on 985
Rush hour traffic on I-985 was slowed by a grass fire Wednesay afternoon with one lane closed while firefighters fought the blaze.
10:19PM ( 4 months ago )
Hall County conviction, sentencing to be reviewed by SCOGA
The State Supreme Court has agreed to hear the appeal of a Hall County man when they reconvene in January.
2:37PM ( 4 months ago )
Maysville man dies from Banks County wreck
The Georgia State Patrol reports that alcohol and/or drugs were factors a single-vehicle wreck that claimed the life of a Maysville man in Banks County Tuesday night.
11:07AM ( 4 months ago )
Local/State News
Obama again avoids calling 1915 Armenian killings 'genocide'
WASHINGTON (AP) — President Barack Obama will once again stop short of calling the 1915 massacre of Armenians a genocide, prompting anger and disappointment from those who have been pushing him to ful...
1:00PM ( 1 week ago )
Ex-NFL star Hernandez convicted of murder, sentenced to life
FALL RIVER, Mass. (AP) — Former New England Patriots star Aaron Hernandez was convicted of first-degree murder and sentenced to life in prison Wednesday for a deadly late-night shooting, sealing the d...
8:54PM ( 2 weeks ago )
Clinton kicks off 2016 campaign online, heads next to Iowa
WASHINGTON (AP) — Hillary Rodham Clinton jumped back into presidential politics on Sunday, making a much-awaited announcement she will again seek the White House with a promise to serve as the "champi...
7:56PM ( 3 weeks ago )
Hall, White, Jefferson schools recognized nationally for use of technology
Three school districts in northeast Georgia - Hall, White, and Jefferson - have received national recognition for their use use of innovative technologies. They earned top spots in the Center for Digital Education's and the National School Boards Association's 10th annual Digital School Districts Survey.
By Staff
1:00PM ( 3 weeks ago )
US Capitol lockdown lifted after man fatally shoots himself
WASHINGTON (AP) — A precautionary lockdown of the U.S. Capitol was lifted after about two hours Saturday following a suicide by a man carrying a protest sign.The man died after shooting himself on the...
6:15PM ( 3 weeks ago )