U.S. economic growth slowed in the fall as supply chain disruptions and a growing labor shortage weighed on the still-nascent recovery from the coronavirus pandemic, according to a new Federal Reserve report.
In its region-by-region roundup of anecdotal information known as the Beige Book, the Fed reported that several districts noted that growth overall had cooled during the September through October period that the report covers.
“Several districts noted that the pace of growth slowed this period, constrained by supply chain disruptions, labor shortages, and uncertainty around the delta variant of COVID-19,” the Fed said.
The Beige Book also found “significantly elevated prices” across most districts, an increase fueled by rising demand for consumer goods and raw materials. Cost increases were widespread across industries and were largely driven by product scarcity and supply chain disruptions. Price pressures also stemmed from increased transportation and labor constraints, the Fed said, with the cost of steel, electronic components and freight rising rapidly.