Friday October 9th, 2015 4:59AM

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
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 ( 9 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 ( 9 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 ( 9 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 ( 9 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 ( 9 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 ( 9 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 ( 9 months ago )
Local/State News
UN is next stop for Obama after success with Iran, pope; top issues are IS, Syria, Russia
NEW YORK (AP) — Fresh from successes on Iran and with the pope, President Barack Obama still carried heavy burdens into critical meetings this week at the U.N. General Assembly.They include the threat...
3:31PM ( 1 week ago )
Stunning Congress, House Speaker Boehner announces plans to resign; tea party declares victory
WASHINGTON (AP) — Plunging Congress into deeper turmoil, House Speaker John Boehner abruptly announced his resignation Friday, shutting down a tea party drive to depose the nation's highest-ranking Re...
6:14PM ( 1 week ago )
Tornado heavily damages 10 homes but causes no injuries on island in South Carolina
JOHNS ISLAND, S.C. (AP) — A tornado quickly blew through a neighborhood on the South Carolina coast early Friday and blew out windows, knocked down trees and heavily damaged ten homes.The tornado touc...
5:08PM ( 1 week ago )
Caterpillar says it may cut more than 10,000 jobs by 2018, lowers 2015 revenue expectation
Caterpillar is planning another round of job cuts that could exceed 10,000 people through 2018, as the construction and mining equipment maker adjusts to downturns in key markets.That could amount to...
10:06AM ( 1 week ago )
Escaped tarantula grounds Atlanta-bound flight in Baltimore
An eight-legged creature that escaped in the cargo hold of a passenger flight from Baltimore-Washington International Airport to Atlanta's Hartsfield-Jackson International grounded the plane and sent passengers onto another flight.
By The Associated Press
9:06AM ( 1 week ago )