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Economy Growing At 'Modest To Moderate Pace,' Fed Says

There was "modest to moderate" economic growth across the nation as the year began, the Federal Reserve says in its latest "beige book" review of conditions around the nation.

According to the central bank, five of its 12 districts "reported that economic growth was moderate in January and early February." Those five: Dallas, New York, Minneapolis, Richmond and St. Louis.

Another five "reported that activity expanded at a modest pace." They are: Atlanta, Cleveland, Kansas City, Philadelphia and San Francisco.

In "Fed speak," moderate growth is better than modest growth.

As for the last two, "the Boston District said the economy continued to expand slowly, and the Chicago District reported that economic activity grew at a slow pace." In Fed speak, "continued to expand slowly" is better than "grew at a slow pace."

The beige book, written eight times a year and named for the traditional color of its cover, is prepared by the Fed's staff for meetings of the bank's policymakers.

The day's other major economic news, as we reported earlier, was a survey showing that private employers added an estimated 198,000 jobs last month. Meanwhile, the stock market is up again today — building on Tuesday's record-high close for the Dow Jones industrial average.

Copyright 2021 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.

Mark Memmott is NPR's supervising senior editor for Standards & Practices. In that role, he's a resource for NPR's journalists – helping them raise the right questions as they do their work and uphold the organization's standards.