U.S. Fed says economy continues expansion despite major disruptions from hurricanes

Source: Xinhua| 2017-10-19 05:39:59|Editor: Mu Xuequan
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WASHINGTON, Oct. 18 (Xinhua) -- U.S. economy continues to modest and moderate growth in September through early October, despite major disruptions brought by hurricanes to some regions and industries, the Federal Reserve said on Wednesday.

"Reports from all 12 Federal Reserve Districts indicated that economic activity increased in September through early October, with the pace of growth split between modest and moderate," said the Fed in its latest survey on economic conditions, known as the Beige Book.

During the reporting period, hurricanes Harvey and Irma brought major disruptions to industries, such as transportation, energy and agriculture, in some areas in Richmond, Atlanta, and Dallas districts, said the report.

Despite the disruptions, economic activities in these regions maintained moderate growth during the period, according to the report.

The report showed that employment growth was modest, while labor markets remained tight as employers were having difficulty in finding qualified workers, particularly in industries, such as construction, transportation, skilled manufacturing, and some health care and service positions.

However, wage growth and the price pressures remained modest, said the report.

Fed chair Janet Yellen said recently that the biggest surprise in the U.S. economy this year has been inflation which has been slowing down since January.

She expected the hurricanes will likely weigh down on economic growth in the third quarter, but a rebound thereafter.

In view of the tight labor market and stable economic growth, Yellen said the central bank will continue to gradually increase interest rates in the future.

Investors are now expecting the Fed to hike the interest rate again in December.