Economic activity continued to expand moderately from November through December, according to the Federal Reserve Board's periodic Beige Book report on economic conditions gathered from its member banks.

Conditions were said to be improving in the Boston, New York, Philadelphia and Richmond districts. Activity increased “modestly to moderately” in the Cleveland, Atlanta, Chicago, St. Louis, Kansas City, Minneapolis and Dallas districts in the reporting period leading up to the close of 2010. Conditions were generally better in manufacturing, retail, and nonfinancial services sectors than in real estate or finance. Richmond and Chicago cited especially solid gains in manufacturing orders. However, Boston, Atlanta and Dallas said business remained weak for manufacturers.