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Fed Beige Book Indicates ‘Modest, Slight’ Economic Growth

Overall economic activity expanded in September, but the Federal Reserve System’s Beige Book survey reports growth in many Fed districts could be “modest’ or “slight.”

“Contacts generally noted weaker or less certain outlooks for business conditions,” the Fed’s survey said.

The Beige Book is published eight times a year and is a survey of economic conditions in each Fed district. The information is gathered through reports from Fed banks and branch directors and interviews with key business contacts, economists, market experts, and other sources.

The survey found consumer spending was up slightly in most districts, with auto sales and tourism leading the way. Business spending also increased slightly, particularly for construction and mining equipment and auto dealer inventories, according to the survey.

Hiring and capital spending plans were restrained and labor market conditions remained largely unchanged, the survey said.

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