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Businessweek Archives

The Week Ahead


Business Week Index

THE WEEK AHEAD

CONSUMER PRICE INDEX

Tuesday, Apr. 15, 8:30 a.m.EDT -- Consumer prices of goods and services

probably increased a small 0.2% in March, says the median forecast of

economists surveyed by MMS International, one of The McGraw-Hill Companies.

Prices rose 0.3% in February. Excluding food and energy, the core consumer

price index was likely up 0.3% in March, on top of a 0.2% gain in February.

BUSINESS INVENTORIES

Tuesday, Apr. 15, 8:30 a.m.EDT -- Inventories held by manufacturers,

wholesalers, and retailers likely increased 0.3% in February. Factories already

have reported a 0.4% gain in their stock levels, but the sharp increase in

consumer demand last quarter suggests that retail inventories were drawn down

in February. In January, business inventories were up just 0.1%.

HOUSING STARTS

Wednesday, Apr. 16, 8:30 a.m.EDT -- The MMS survey projects that housing starts

slipped to an annual rate of 1.46 million in March, after surging 12.2% in

February, to a 1.53 million pace.

INDUSTRIAL PRODUCTION

Wednesday, Apr. 16, 9:15 a.m.EDT -- Output at factories, mines, and utilities

probably increased 0.5% in March, the same solid increase posted in February,

says the MMS report. The March advance is suggested by the increase in hours

worked in the factory sector. Consequently, the average operating rate for all

industry likely edged up to 83.5% in March, from 83.3% in February.

INTERNATIONAL TRADE

Thursday, Apr. 17, 8:30 a.m.EDT -- The trade deficit for goods and services

probably narrowed to $11 billion in February, after jumping to $12.7 billion in

January. Exports probably increased slightly after falling for two consecutive

months. And imports likely fell after advancing 2.2% in January. The

foreign-trade sector of the economy probably subtracted heavily from growth in

the first quarter.


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