The Federal Reserve’s latest Beige Book, which gathers anecdotal information on the current state of the US economy, confirmed that it was growing faster through early July, but the recovery is being restrained by widespread shortages of labour and supplies.

Prices were also strong, rising “at an above-average pace,” the Fed said, with its business contacts apparently uncertain that higher inflation would fade soon.

Overall, the US economy was described as displaying “moderate to robust growth”, marking the report’s most optimistic overall characterisation of the economy since early 2018. However, it noted a heightened sense of concern among businesses that the supply chain disruptions that have become a feature of the economy’s reopening from COVID-19-related shutdowns would persist for longer than officials had predicted.

Meanwhile, inflation in Britain surged further above the Bank of England’s (BOE) target in…

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