The Federal Reserve Open Market Committee (FOMC) said economic activity in the U.S. appears to have “picked up” in May and June after steep decreases in March and April, according to minutes from its July 28-29 meeting.

Steps to keep the pandemic in check continued to have a “substantial” effect on economic activity domestically and internationally, according to FOMC, which also noted that it appears that real gross domestic product (GDP) measured on a quarterly basis had fallen at a “historically rapid rate” in the second quarter.

“Following sharp declines, economic activity and employment had picked up somewhat in recent months but remained well below levels at the beginning of the year. Weaker demand and significantly lower oil prices were holding

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