Weekly Economic Commentary – 07/21/2014

7.21 weekly Economic  imageBeige Book: Window on Main Street
Modest-to-Moderate Economic Growth Continues

The Beige Book is a qualitative assessment of the U.S. economy and each of the 12 Federal Reserve (Fed) Districts. We believe the Beige Book is best interpreted quantitatively by measuring how the descriptors change over time. The latest edition of the Fed Beige Book, released last Wednesday, July 16, 2014, ahead of the July 29 – 30, 2014 Federal Open Market Committee (FOMC) meeting, once again described the economy as increasing at either a “modest” or “moderate” pace, noting that “labor market conditions improved” but that “several Districts continued to report some difficulty finding workers for skilled positions.” Aside from higher wages to attract talent for these skilled positions, the Beige Book noted that “wage pressures remained modest in most Districts” and that “price pressures were generally contained.” The modest-to-moderate description of the overall economy has now been used in the last 10 Beige Books, and in 11 of the past 12 dating back to March 2013.

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