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Economy Grew At 'Moderate Pace' In April And May, Federal Reserve Says

Anecdotal reports from across the nation "suggest overall economic activity expanded at a moderate pace" from early April through late May, the Federal Reserve just reported.

In its "beige book" review of conditions around the country, the Fed said the only one of its 12 bank districts to report slower growth was Philadelphia.

The report also adds that:

"Wage pressures overall were modest. Hiring was steady or increased slightly, and contacts in a number of Districts reported difficulties in finding qualified workers, particularly those with specialized skills. Price inflation remained modest across Districts, and overall cost pressures eased as the price of energy inputs declined."

And its introduction ends with this:

"Economic outlooks remain positive, but contacts were slightly more guarded in their optimism."

The tone of the report is more upbeat than the analyses from many economists after recent economic indicators, including last Friday's "lousy" jobs report.

As we noted earlier, policymakers at the central bank express "little worry" about the economy sinking into another recession this year, according to The Wall Street Journal.

Beige books, named for the color of their covers, are prepared eight times a year before meetings of Fed policymakers.

Copyright 2021 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.

Mark Memmott is NPR's supervising senior editor for Standards & Practices. In that role, he's a resource for NPR's journalists – helping them raise the right questions as they do their work and uphold the organization's standards.