WASHINGTON (AP) — Holiday shopping, strong auto sales and a recovering housing market helped boost the economy in most parts of the United States from the middle of November through December, according to a Federal Reserve survey.
The Fed says 12 of its regional banking districts reported "modest or moderate" growth in the final weeks of 2012. Only St. Louis said growth had slowed.
Consumers increased spending in every district. Auto sales were steady or stronger in 10 districts. Home sales increased in nine districts. And home building expanded in all but one.
Still, employers in some parts of the country delayed hiring because of uncertainty over the fiscal cliff. Congress and the White House reached a deal on taxes on Jan. 1, but put off decisions on government spending cuts.