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The Week Ahead


LEADING INDICATORS

Monday, Oct. 21, 10 a.m. EDT -- The Conference Board's index of leading indicators probably fell 0.2% in September, the same decline as in August. That's the median forecast of economists polled by MMS International.

FEDERAL BUDGET

Tuesday, Oct. 22, 2 p.m. EDT -- The federal government will probably post a surplus of $37 billion in September. If so, the deficit for fiscal 2002, which ended on Sept. 30, totaled $163 billion, compared with a surplus of $127 billion in 2001. Both higher spending and lower taxes contributed to the sharp turnaround in federal finances.

BEIGE BOOK

Wednesday, Oct. 23, 2 p.m. EDT -- The Federal Reserve will publish its roundup of regional economic activity to gauge how businesses are performing. The Beige Book is prepared in advance of the Nov. 6 monetary policy meeting.

DURABLE GOODS ORDERS

Friday, Oct. 25, 8:30 a.m. EDT -- New orders for durable goods very likely fell 1% in September, after a 0.6% slip in August.

NEW RESIDENTIAL SALES

Friday, Oct. 25, 10 a.m. EDT -- New single-family homes probably sold at an annual rate of 978,000 in September, down from 996,000 in August.

EXISTING HOME SALES

Friday, Oct. 25, 10 a.m. EDT -- Existing home sales were probably little changed in September, at a 5.3 million annual pace.


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