Fed Beige Book Reveals QE Failing To Stimulate More Lending; Autos And Homes Boost Manufacturing
A week after Fed Chairman Ben Bernanke faced off with Washington lawmakers in Congress, the Federal Reserve released its latest assessment of economic conditions, or Beige Book. With data spanning to February 22, the Fed’s economists saw activity continued to expand at a moderate pace, as consumer spending and manufacturing strengthened. Interestingly, the Beige Book also revealed loan demand remained flat as bankers faced “stiff competition among lenders to provide credit to well-qualified” borrowers. This could be one indication of why quantitative easing and ultra-loose monetary policy haven't provided such a boost to the economy, as policies aren't fully trickling down.