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Lockhart Says Urban Neighborhoods Can Thrive Amid Weak U.S.

Dec. 14 (Bloomberg) -- Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta President Dennis Lockhart said downtown neighborhoods, including the midtown district surrounding the Atlanta Fed’s headquarters, can thrive in a poor U.S. economy.

“Even in a relatively weak economy, I think this should be a great time for midtown,” Lockhart said in a speech to the Midtown Alliance in Atlanta today. “Increasingly dynamic urban districts drive the economy and social progress. They are rich beehives of creativity, innovation and economic activity.”

Lockhart didn’t comment on the economic outlook or monetary policy in his speech. The Federal Open Market Committee said yesterday the U.S. is maintaining its expansion even as global growth slows.

Lockhart, 64, a former Georgetown University professor, has led the Atlanta Fed since 2007. Fed presidents rotate voting on monetary policy, with Lockhart next voting in 2012. The Atlanta Fed district includes Alabama, Florida, Georgia, and portions of Louisiana, Mississippi, and Tennessee.

To contact the reporter on this story: Steve Matthews in Atlanta at smatthews@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Christopher Wellisz at cwellisz@bloomberg.net

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