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Fifth District Survey of Service Sector Activity

October 27, 2020

The service sector in the Fifth District showed signs of improvement in October, according to the results of the most recent survey from the Richmond Fed. The index for revenues increased from 6 in September to 19 in October. Meanwhile, the index for demand fell slightly but remained positive, suggesting continued growth. Firms also reported strengthening local business conditions. Contacts were optimistic that growth would continue in the next six months.

Survey results suggested that some firms increased employment in October, as this index was positive for the first time since March. Respondents also reported some wage increases and, once again, started to report challenges finding workers with the necessary skills. Contacts expected this difficulty to persist in the coming months.

The average growth rates of both prices paid and prices received by survey respondents fell in October, as growth of prices paid continued to outpace that of prices received. Contacts expected price growth to slow further in the near future.

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