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Firms Have Been Sounding The Alarm on Supply Chains and Shortages for Quite Some Time

Supply chain bottlenecks and labor shortages have taken center stage in recent weeks. However, an analysis of commentary from the Federal Reserve’s Beige Book survey indicates that firms have been increasingly sounding the alarm since earlier this year.


Signs of trouble on the horizon started to appear in March when the phrases “supply chain” and “shortage” were mentioned a combined total of 65 times— more than 3X the average number of mentions throughout 2020. Concerns have only ratcheted up since, increasing in each successive Beige Book release. In yesterday’s release (October 20th), the two phrases were referenced 111 times.