Business Week Index: THE WEEK AHEAD
BusinessWeek Index: THE WEEK AHEAD
Tuesday, June 13, 8:30 a.m. -- Retail sales probably rose 0.5% in May, says the
median forecast of economists surveyed by MMS International, one of the
McGraw-Hill Cos. That's suggested by the rebound in motor vehicles sales and
the positive reports from major retailers. In April, sales took an unexpected
drop of 0.4%, as purchases of durable goods fell 1.5%.
CONSUMER PRICE INDEX
Tuesday, June 13, 8:30 a.m. -- Consumer prices likely grew by 0.3% in May,
after increasing 0.4% in April. Transportation costs--from auto-financing
charges to airline tickets--were up strongly in March and April, but their
gains probably moderated in May. Excluding food and energy, May core prices are
also expected to rise 0.3%, after a 0.4% advance in April.
Wednesday, June 14, 10 a.m. -- Inventories at manufacturers, wholesalers, and
retailers likely grew 0.7% in April, the same hefty increase as in March.
Factories and wholesalers have already reported large rises in their stock
levels. The expected increase suggests that businesses have not adjusted their
inventories to fall into better alignment with sales. Indeed, business sales
probably fell by 0.6% in April, after no change in March.
Thursday, June 15, 9:15 a.m. -- Output at factories, mines, and utilities
probably fell another steep 0.4% in May, on top of a 0.3% drop in April. That's
suggested by the decline in factory jobs and overtime. Auto makers are leading
the cutbacks in spring production. Motor vehicle output alone fell 4.3% in
April. Given the output drop, the average capacity utilization rate for all
industry likely dipped to 83.7% in May, from 84.1%. With production dropping
off so fiercely, economists are predicting little growth in the second quarter.
The MMS survey shows a median forecast of only 1% growth in the real gross
domestic product in the second quarter.