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Strong dollar holding back US growth says Fed report



A strong US dollar is slowing growth and stalling manufacturing according to a report released by the Federal Reserve.
The Beige Book - a review of economic activity from the Federal Reserve - showed modest growth in the economy between mid-August and October.
It also noted that wage growth across the country was "subdued".
The report will contribute to the Federal Reserve's decision on whether to raise rates in October.
The central bank is widely expected to raise rates for the first time since the financial crisis before the end of the year - but most economists predict the move will come in December.
"Producers continued to cite weak oil and gas activity along with a strong dollar as key reasons for the sluggish activity," the report said.
Papal boost
It also suggested that wages across the country remained stagnant, a problem that has dogged the US labour market for the past several years.
But the report added that businesses were "generally optimistic about the near-term outlook".
The strong dollar has hurt tourism as well. The exception was Philadelphia where the Pope Francis's visit helped drive "modest growth".
"The brief papal visit to Philadelphia shifted significant spending from Centre City stores and restaurants to mountain and shore destinations, as the region's population made way for tourists from around the nation and around the world," the report noted.
The Beige Book is a survey of anecdotal data compiled from businesses across the Federal Reserve's 12 districts.