MNI BRIEF: Wage Pressures Still Elevated -Fed Beige Book
Inflation expected to moderate further this year, businesses tell regional Fed banks.
Wage pressures "remained elevated" throughout the U.S. in early January as employers offered bonuses and better benefits to attract and retain workers, though five out of 12 Fed banks said businesses in their district reported pressures had "eased somewhat," the Federal Reserve said Wednesday.
Overall economic activity was "relatively unchanged" since the previous survey, with five districts reporting slight or modest increases in activity, six noting no change or a slight decline and the New York Fed citing a significant decline in economic activity. Labor markets were "persistently tight" while inflation slowed and firms said they expected price growth to "moderate further" this year, according to the Fed Beige Book. (See MNI INTERVIEW: Atlanta Fed Tracker Shows Wage Growth Has Peaked)