Economy rebounding from winter: Beige Book

The United States economy is continuing to rebound from a slowdown during the harsh winter, the Federal Reserve on Wednesday found in its Beige Book, which the Fed produces eight times annually. 

The Fed says growth was either moderate or modest in all 12 districts and increasing purchases of cars and trucks was a major factor. 

“Consumer spending grew at a moderate pace over the latest reporting period, with a mixed performance among non-auto retailers but brisk growth in vehicle sales and moderate growth in tourism,” the Beige Book said. 

ADVERTISEMENT
The Fed said the jobs market “generally improved” since April’s report and inflation was “contained.” Some price pressure was being felt in construction material, energy, precious metals and agricultural goods, however.

“Agriculture conditions proved challenging in many Districts, with drought conditions reported by some Districts and excessive moisture reported in others,” the Fed notes.

The outlook comes amid mixed signals on growth ahead of Friday’s monthly jobs report. 

Last week, the Commerce Department estimated that the U.S. gross domestic product declined by 1 percent in the first quarter of 2014.