Fed is worried by real estate, cheered by holiday sales

12/3/2009 | Washington Post, The

The economy is "modestly" improving in most of the U.S., but falling home prices and a deepening crisis in commercial real estate present obstacles to any robust recovery, the Federal Reserve said in its Beige Book. The report states that consumer spending has increased moderately and used-car sales are doing well. The job market continues to be a problem, "with further layoffs, sluggish hiring and high levels of unemployment."

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