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The Beige Book is a report on current economic conditions, published eight times per year by the Federal Reserve Board. It is a survey of the lastest and most up-to-date economic trends in the U.S.. It is more formally called the Summary of Commentary on Current Economic Conditions.

The contents of the Beige Book come from all of the Federal Reserve Banks and branches. There are twelve Federal Reserve Banks and about 25 branches. The directors of each glean information from key business contacts, economists, market experts, and other sources for the report. The information is somewhat anecdotal in that it isn't always based on cold hard facts or scientific analysis. Nonetheless, the results are used by the FOMC as preparations for their meetings eight times per year.

The information may be somewhat dated by the time it is gathered and compiled, but it is a good indicator of how the Fed might act at its upcoming meeting. The Federal Open Market Committee makes decisions on the prime lending rate, the money reserve at each of its Reserve Banks, and open market operations.

Sources:
FRB: Beige Book(www.federalreserve.gov)
Color Me Beige (www.stls.frb.org)

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