The U.S. economy experienced a widespread slowdown during the summer months according to the Federal Reserve's much-watched Beige Book report.
Reports from the twelve Federal Reserve Districts suggested continued growth in national economic activity during the reporting period of mid-July through the end of August, but with widespread signs of a deceleration compared with preceding periods.
Economic growth at a modest pace was the most common characterization of overall conditions, as provided by the five western Districts of St.Louis, Minneapolis, Kansas City, Dallas, and San Francisco. The reports from Boston and Cleveland also pointed to positive developments or net improvements compared with the previous reporting period. However, the remaining Districts of New York, Philadelphia, Richmond, Atlanta, and Chicago all highlighted mixed conditions or deceleration in overall economic activity.
The Beige Book confirms what other economic data have suggested, that the economy continued to grow over recent months but sluggishly.
The report from the central bank's districts is more evidence that the economy hasn't slipped back into recession but hasn't gathered much upward momentum either.