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The Beige Book and the Fed's Web Site

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Go to the Federal Reserve website at www.federalreserve.gov and select About the Fed, then The Federal Reserve System, and then Districts and Banks. Find your Federal Reserve District. Next, return to the Fed home page and select Monetary Policy, then Reports, and then Beige Book. What is the Beige Book? Locate the current Beige Book report and compare consumer spending for the entire U.S. economy with consumer spending in your Federal Reserve District. What are the economic strengths and weaknesses in both? Are retailers reporting that recent sales have met their expectations? What are their expectations for the future?

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Solution Preview

The Beige Book is a compilation of economic activity in each of the Fed's eight districts. Member banks report to the Fed on lending activity. In addition surveys are issued to businesses who report on payroll and inventories. These are used as an indicator of how the economy is doing in each region. The report is published eight time a year, and the most recent one was issued in October 2009.

We can determine how a given region compares to the overall economy by reading the "full report" found here:
http://www.federalreserve.gov/FOMC/Beigebook/2009/20091021/FullReport.htm
Then compare this to your region.

For example, using the Dallas region (Eleventh District) , we would note that :
- Sales of new vehicles are down in ...

Solution Summary

Use of the federal reserve's web site to find consumer spending nationwide and in a specific district in the Beige Book.

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