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July Issue of St. Louis Fed's The Regional Economist Now Available


ST. LOUIS – The July 2012 issue of The Regional Economist, the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis’ quarterly review of business and economic conditions, is now available.  The full issue can be accessed online at

The issue’s articles include:

  • “Household Financial Stability” – The financial crisis and ensuing recession took a toll on just about everybody’s household wealth. Not surprisingly, the pain wasn’t evenly distributed. Those groups that are usually the most vulnerable in our society—young and middle-aged minority households—suffered the most, percentage-wise.
  • “Understanding Poverty Measures” – Official poverty rates are on the rise in the United States. But does this necessarily mean that more people can’t meet their basic needs? This article examines how poverty is calculated and looks at the criticisms of these measures.
  • “Small vs. Large Firms during the Recession” – Conventional wisdom says that employment at small firms declines more than employment at large firms during recessions. However, that doesn’t seem to have been the case during the Great Recession of 2007-09.
  • “Quantitative Easing:  Lessons We’ve Learned” – During the recent financial crisis, numerous central banks turned to unconventional monetary policy, including QE. Understanding QE’s effect on long-term interest rates is crucial for assessing its long-run viability as an effective monetary policy tool.
  • “Real GDP Growth for 2012 Should Best 2011’s Rate” – Despite numerous headwinds, the economy seems poised to grow this year at a rate faster than the 1.6 percent recorded for last year.
  • “Recovery Takes Hold in Labor Markets” – In many ways, the recovery in labor markets is stronger in the District than in the nation as a whole. Three important indicators are examined: the unemployment rate, household employment and job openings.
  • “Community Profile: Paragould, Ark.” – Although manufacturing may be in decline in many parts of the country, this city in northeastern Arkansas has developed a winning formula for attracting decent-paying factory jobs. One of the few worries is finding enough skilled people to take the jobs.