Business Week Index
THE WEEK AHEAD
CONSUMER PRICE INDEX
Wednesday, Oct. 16, 8:30 a.m.EDT -- Consumer prices probably increased 0.3% in
September, says the median forecast of economists surveyed by MMS
International, one of The McGraw-Hill Companies. Food prices, up 0.4% in
August, likely rose again last month as crop shortages work their way through
to retail prices. Excluding food and energy, core prices also are expected to
have risen by 0.3%. In August, both the total CPI and core index edged up 0.1%.
Thursday, Oct. 17, 8:30 a.m.EDT -- Housing starts probably fell to an annual
rate of 1.47 million in September. Housing remains strong, despite the year's
rise of more than one percentage point in fixed mortgage rates. In August,
starts unexpectedly increased by 4.5%, to a 1.53 million pace.
Thursday, Oct. 17, 9:15 a.m.EDT -- Output at the nation's factories, mines, and
utilities probably increased a slim 0.1% in September, after rising 0.5% in
August. That gain, though, reflected a bounceback in utility use after a
cooler-than-normal July. Although manufacturing jobs plunged 57,000 in
September, the workweek rose and overtime remained high. That suggests a small
gain in factory output. Operating rates likely fell to 83.3%, from 83.5% in
Thursday, Oct. 17, 10 a.m.EDT -- Business inventories likely grew by 0.3% in
August, says the MMS survey. That's down from a 0.4% rise in July. Factories
have already reported a 0.3% gain in their stock levels. Business sales likely
increased about 0.2% in August, after jumping 1.2% in July.
Friday, Oct. 18, 8:30 a.m.EDT -- The trade deficit for goods and services
probably narrowed to $9.8 billion, after widening sharply in July to $11.7
billion from June's $8.2 billion. Exports, which fell 3.6% in July, probably
rebounded in August, and imports, up 1.3%, likely fell.