Two thirds of the Federal Reserve districts across the U.S. reported weakening activity in commercial real estate despite a moderated or stabilized pace of decline in the overall economy, according to a report issued by the Federal Reserve today.

The latest report, known as the ‘Beige Book’, summarized information received by Federal Reserve branches on or before July 20. Information comes from business and other contacts outside the bank and is not commentary on the views of the Fed’s officials.

The report said the economy was still weak going into the summer.

Economic activity:
“Slow,” “subdued,” or weak in five districts
Pace of decline moderating in two districts
Signs of stabilization in four districts
Contraction in one district

Retail - Most saw sluggish activity
Manufacturing - three showed improvement, two showed moderation in declines, two saw a decrease, and most others saw continuing low levels.
Services – Five reported contractions
Banking – Six showed weaker demands for some types of loans
Residential real estate – Soft in most districts, with many showing signs of improvement
Commercial real estate – Two thirds said activity weakened, with the rest saying activity remained slow.
Price changes – Districts reported generally modest price changes in sectors and products, five said metals prices increased in recent months.
Labor markets – Most said “extremely soft”

The Fed districts included in the report include Boston, New York, Philadelphia, Cleveland, Richmond, Atlanta, Chicago, St. Louis, Minneapolis, Kansas City, Dallas, and San Francisco.