Fed Offers Tepid View of Economic Picture

Federal Reserve officials painted a mostly uninspiring picture in their latest economic assessment, calling growth overall “slight” or “moderate” across most of the country.

Overall, the Fed’s 12 districts did report strength in real estate and housing. However, manufacturing in recent days has been “weak” and retail sales “mixed,” according to the latest Beige Book account.

District observers blamed much of the weakness on a West Coast port strike, inclement weather and lower oil prices. There were oil-related layoffs across several districts and only “modest” or “moderate” wage pressures.