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Fed's Bowman sees slow, uneven recovery ahead

U.S. Federal Reserve Governor Michelle Bowman poses at a conference on monetary policy at The Hoover Institution in Palo Alto, California, U.S., May 3, 2019. REUTES/Ann Saphir/Files

(Reuters) - The U.S. economy has bounced back “noticeably” from the depths of the coronavirus recession, Federal Reserve Governor Michelle Bowman said on Wednesday, but it is still far from back to normal and will take some time to get there.

“Progress toward a full recovery in economic activity may well be slow and uneven,” Bowman said in remarks prepared for delivery to the Kansas Bankers Association. “The Federal Reserve will continue to monitor progress and respond promptly and flexibly to support the recovery.”

To help shape her understanding of the outlook, Bowman said she is in the process of speaking individually with every CEO of 650 Fed-supervised community banks across the country.

The pandemic “continues to weigh heavily on our national economy,” she said, and community banks remained well-positioned to help support the recovery.

Bowman’s comments come a day before central bankers gather for an annual meeting typically held in Jackson Hole, Wyoming but this year held virtually because of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Reporting by Ann Saphir; Editing by Chizu Nomiyama

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