A press release from the Federal Reserve indicates "the economic recovery is continuing at a moderate pace, though somewhat more slowly than the Committee had expected."
Also, recent labor market indicators have been weaker than anticipated. The slower pace of the recovery reflects in part factors that are likely to be temporary, including the damping effect of higher food and energy prices on consumer purchasing power and spending as well as supply chain disruptions associated with the tragic events in Japan. Household spending and business investment in equipment and software continue to expand. However, investment in nonresidential structures is still weak, and the housing sector continues to be depressed. Inflation has picked up in recent months, mainly reflecting higher prices forsome commodities and imported goods, as well as the recent supply chain disruptions. However, longer-term inflation expectations have remained stable.