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Economy Saw Modest Growth in Late 2020, Fed’s Beige Book Says

Economy Saw Modest Growth in Late 2020, Fed’s Beige Book Says

WASHINGTON—The U.S. economy grew modestly in the final weeks of 2020, as a resurgence in Covid-19 cases prompted business in some sectors to slow, a F

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WASHINGTON—The U.S. economy grew modestly in the final weeks of 2020, as a resurgence in Covid-19 cases prompted business in some sectors to slow, a Federal Reserve report said Wednesday.

The Fed’s periodic compilation of anecdotes from business contacts, known as the Beige Book, said reports from some parts of the country indicated declines in retail sales and demand for hospitality and leisure services. Other sectors, such as manufacturing and residential real estate, remained strong.

The Fed’s characterization of economic conditions represented a downgrade from its previous Beige Book report, released Dec. 2, when policy makers had described economic growth as “modest or moderate.” At that time, business contacts had signaled the possibility of potential slowdown given the surge in Covid-19 infections that was taking place at the time.

Write to Paul Kiernan at [email protected]

This post first appeared on wsj.com

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