Fed survey: U.S. economy picked up at end of year
WASHINGTON – Holiday shopping, strong auto sales and a recovering housing market helped boost the U.S. economy from the middle of November through early January, according to a Federal Reserve survey released Wednesday.
The Fed said 12 of its regional banking districts reported "modest or moderate" growth in the final weeks of 2012. Of those, only St. Louis said growth had slowed from the previous survey, which covered October through early November.
Consumers increased spending at the end of the year in every district. Auto sales were steady or stronger in 10 districts. Home sales increased in nine districts. And home building expanded in all but one.
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