WASHINGTON - The U.S. economy was strengthening in most regions of the country in September to early October, helped by gains in consumer spending, manufacturing and commercial construction.
The Federal Reserve says in its latest survey of business conditions that six of its 12 regions -- Cleveland, Chicago, St. Louis, Minneapolis, Dallas and San Francisco -- reported "moderate" growth. Five others described growth as "modest," and one -- Boston -- described activity as mixed.
The report depicted an economy moving ahead steadily but not at a pace that would prompt the Fed to accelerate its timetable for raising interest rates.
The survey, known as the Beige Book, is based on anecdotal reports from businesses and will be considered with other data when Fed policymakers meet Oct. 28-29.