Fed Beige Book Highlights

I think their summary this time pretty well covers the waterfront:

Overall Economic Activity On balance, reports from Federal Reserve Districts suggested that the economy expanded at a modest pace through the end of August. Although concerns regarding tariffs and trade policy uncertainty continued, the majority of businesses remained optimistic about the near-term outlook. Reports on consumer spending were mixed, although auto sales for most Districts grew at a modest pace. Tourism activity since the previous report remained solid in most reporting Districts. On balance, transportation activity softened, which some reporting Districts attributed to slowing global demand and heightened trade tensions. Home sales remained constrained in the majority of Districts due primarily to low inventory levels, and new home construction activity remained flat. Commercial real estate construction and sales activity were steady, while the pace of leasing increased slightly over the prior period. Overall manufacturing activity was down slightly from the previous report. Among reporting Districts, agricultural conditions remained weak as a result of unfavorable weather conditions, low commodity prices, and trade-related uncertainties. Lending volumes grew modestly across several Districts. Reports on activity in the nonfinancial services sector were positive, with reporting Districts noting similar or improved activity from the last report.

Employment and Wages Overall, Districts indicated that employment grew at a modest pace, on par with the previous reporting period. While employment growth varied by industry, some Districts noted manufacturing employment was flat to down. Firms and staffing agencies universally cited tightness across various labor market segments and skill levels, which continued to constrain growth in overall business activity. On balance, Districts reported that the pace of wage growth remained modest to moderate, similar to the previous reporting period. Districts continued to report strong upward pressure on pay for entry-level and low-skill workers, as well as for technology, construction, and some professional services positions. In addition to wage increases, some Districts noted other efforts—such as enhanced benefits offerings, work arrangement flexibility, and signing bonuses—to attract and retain employees.

Prices On net, Districts indicated modest price increases since the last report.  Retailers and manufacturers in some Districts reported slight increases in input costs. Although firms in some Districts noted an ability to pass along price increases, manufacturers relayed limited ability to raise prices. District reports on the impact of tariffs on pricing were mixed, with some Districts anticipating that the effects would not be felt for a few months.

Oh, also toss CNBC’s carefully timed “Alan Greenspan says it’s ‘only a matter of time’ before negative rates spread to the US.”

Will be mighty interesting to see how the markets play this – if at all –  with the pending EmpSit data coming Friday…


20 thoughts on “Fed Beige Book Highlights”

  1. “Alan Greenspan says it’s ‘only a matter of time’ before negative rates spread to the US.”

    Time to buy a coil-spring mattress…?

    There have been two passings in the past 20 years, in a “hobo colony” in the city near me which I never knew existed. The more-recent was a lady, in whose mattress was found $683thou. The man who died a few years earlier had nearly $1mln. Folks who suffered really hard times during The Depression had a different way of looking at banks — as thieves, not as community benefactors…

    • Give up the latex mattress? Never. The plastic burial vaults hidden on private land sound better to me. Now if I only had something to put in one…

      • LOL LOL LOL Neither.. I know a guy that use to make caskets.. he bought his for him and his wife.. took the liner out of it.. and the lid.. put glass doors on it and turned it into a beautiful china hutch.. the doors and liners went in the garage for storage.. the burial vaults.. he turned into planter..
        Im going to have them turn me to ashes and told the wife to put me in the garden where I can do some good.. I sure won’t have any use for my body after I am gone.. why waste the space LOL LOL…

    • Ray there was a guy around here.. they nicknamed him green jeans.. saved every dime.. his house was falling apart.. I was going to fix his roof and a bunch came and stopped me.. since he could afford to fix it he just didn’t want to spend any money to do it..
      Unfortunately he was mugged and killed for the money he carried in his pockets.. when I worked as a grocery store clerk.. it was so comical.. to watch.. the wealthiest people entering are the cheapest and did everything they could to get free groceries.. a couple of ladies.. would only buy cat food.. took food over to them only to find out they were the richest ladies in our community LOL LOL LOL LOL… when I delivered pizza’s the same thing they are the crappiest tippers in the world ask any waitress.. the pizza company had to bribe drivers to deliver to those area’s.. so I totally believe that story about the mattress.. my father went through the depression he had cash hidden all over the house.. a boss of mine was irritated at me because I love to read.. tossed a book at me said he why not read this one.. HOME FIRES BURNING.. every other page was a fifty dollar bill.. I had taken a whole truck load to be burried rushed back to check them out LOL unfortunately the whole bunch was already ten feet down..

  2. Well i asked them for a year extension of things for personal reasons. I got confirmation that was granted. I dont care if ya believe me or not the economic collapse has been pushed a single year into the future. It will still tank and Trump will still get the blame.

    Do you know the story about the the orgins of the Hope. Diamond.

    I heard it the other day… supposed to be a true story. Seems true. One passed down word to mouth from elder tribes men of Africa. Anyway,

    A farmer had a beautiful ranch in Africa. He was reading all these stories on the news paper about how people were getting rich like “bill Bill Gates rich” finding diamonds back in the 1700’s ish.

    After a few years he decided that ranch wasnt good enough. And so he sold the ranch and everything he owned to a couple brothers. After which He set out to find diamonds and be rich.

    A few years later one of the brothers found a peculiar rock on the ranch down in the creek bed. He thoughtit was just a chunk of crystal. It later turned out to be the Largest Diamond ever found. The Hope Diamond. The creek bed was full of those crystals. And so the entire ranch later became the Largest Diamond mine in the world. The brothers sitting around trying to figure what to call the name of their company. One finally says to the other, “Why dont we name it after that poor chap that set out to find diamonds and sold us the ranch, Da’beers.” As you know, that is a true story. DaBeer’s is the Largest Diamond producer in the world.

    Now the Google gives a different account of things. however the guy i was talking too said that is the real way things went down. An African fella. Not a black American.

    Have a good weekend.

    • Hi, George,

      Andy has the Hope diamond origin incorrect. The Hope diamond was re-cut from the French Blue diamond, which was stolen sometime between September 11 and 17 of 1792; in Paris, France. The Hope diamond appeared 20 years and two days later in London, England, and there is significance to that time period and a story. This blue diamond was later named the Hope diamond because it was purchased later by famous gem collector Henry Hope. The French Blue diamond was cut from the Tavernier Blue diamond that John Baptiste Tavernier purchased in India for King Louis 14th. The Hope diamond weighs 45.52 carats. The original Tavernier Blue diamond was mined in India and not Africa. There is a lot to the story of the Hope diamond, and myths and legends have unfortunately become associated with the facts. I wrote an article on the Hope diamond that was published in the June, 2005 issue of Lapidary Journal/Jewelry Artist magazine. My article was approved by the past Curator and the current Curator of the Smithsonian’s Gem and Mineral Hall, John S. White and Jeffrey Post. I held the Hope diamond in my hands during our investigation of the diamond, where Scott Sucher, Steve Attaway, and I worked with the current Curator, under his supervision and instructions. Later, Scott Sucher had several articles published on the Hope diamond for Gems & Gemology, the quarterly publication by the Gemological Institute of America.

      The diamond mining and manufacturing company of DeBeers got its name from the DeBeers family in Africa, the original owners of the land where diamonds were first found in Africa. Cecil Rhodes was one of the original owners of this diamond mining company.

      • Well, geeze thanks Nancy, thank you very much. I was simply relaying a story from a guy i met.

        I kinda like the point of the African guys story more than the Hope Diamond. Lol. Its a very good lesson about looking outside of yourself for something you already posses. Chasing after riches when you are already rich. If ya know what he means. Maybe he meant the Heart of the Ocean, the one that Rose jacked from the movie Titanic?? Lol

        I digress…

        Im picking up my study gear for the series 7 pre-exams today and spend some “time” in lessons with TM.

        Here and Now. Here and Now. Chop wood, carry water.

      • That reminds me Nancy thanks for reminding me…. I have to get the wife an Xmas gift.. maybe a ring or a necklace something nice..not to big but unique..I finally figured out what I am doing for my favorite holiday.. valentines day.. the flaming rose.. it is going to be better than the toilet brush holder.. LOL I turned that into a waterfall with love doves in the center.. everytime the wife looks at the toilet brush she has to think about it as that lit waterfall .. the flaming rose should be even more cool LOL LOL…..
        I seen the Hope diamond enough times.. we were talking about that yesterday.. people go crazy over money.. I have seen some pretty freaky things that family will do to family over a green piece of paper it is shameful..
        years ago I took care of a woman.. she had this huge gaudy ring on that I thought was fake.. It looked like something out of one of the machines in a restaurant to lure kids into sticking quarters in it..
        anyway her kids were coming and she handed it to me and said.. honey take this up to the office and have them put it in their safe…
        Here that damned thing was a real diamond.. the second biggest one I had ever seen besides the hope diamond.. another did the same thing with a gold chain and a twenty dollar gold piece…a gift her husband had given her.. so afraid of family going after what they have.. definitely shameful..

      • the one I personally like is the Hot Pink tourmaline with diamonds I will have to get in touch with you ..

    • i had a strange “woo-woo” feeling over the weekend with the result being the extension of “four seasons” as well. much needed time!

      • Andy,

        The guys from Africa you met likely have some great tales as well as some true stories about several huge diamonds having been unearthed from Africa.

        It was never my intention to insult you. I did use the word “incorrect”.

        Scott Sucher’s research regarding the Hope diamond says that certain evidence uncovered recently suggests that Henry Hope may have been the mastermind behind the 1792 heist, which occurred during the French Revolution. The story of the Hope diamond would make a great mini-series for television, if they could just stick to the facts. I can imagine the wonderful costumes. The historical timelines concerning the Hope diamond story begins in 1668 and runs to present times.

    • Andy,

      No disrespect intended, but I gotta ask a couple of questions about your “1 year extension” announcement.

      You indicated that you had asked “them” for the extension for personal reasons. Who might “them” be? You must be aligned with some very powerful forces (entities?). Is there a list of favorites (human/spirit/soul), on which you name is found and the rest of us aren’t?

    • Andy: Did you ask for the extension while you are getting your Series 7 Securities License. Good idea. Are you also getting your Insurance license? What company is sponsoring you? Get the telephone #’s of the the rich & famous at the ranch, for business prospects when you get your license. I imagine you already thought of that since you have a pretty sharp mind.

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