Business Week Index: The Week Ahead

      Wednesday, Feb. 22    The U.S. Treasury is expected to post a surplus of $13.5 
      billion in January, according to the median forecast of economists surveyed by 
      MMS International, a division of McGraw-Hill Inc. Washington recorded a $15.2 
      billion surplus in January, 1994. Strong economic growth is lifting tax 
      receipts. The Clinton Administration forecasts that the deficit for fiscal 
      1995, which began in October, will total $192.5 billion.
      Thursday, Feb. 23, 8:30 a.m.    The Commerce Dept.'s survey of plant and 
      equipment spending for 1995 will probably show that all industries are set to 
      lift capital budgets by about 7%. That would be only slightly below the 8.8% 
      increase planned for 1994. Beginning this year, Commerce sill conduct its 
      spending survey only twice a year, replacing its quarterly report. The 
      revamping was done to be consistent with the department's Annual Capital 
      Expenditures Survey. The latest spending plans will be significant because 
      business investment is expected to be a growth leader this year.
      Friday, Feb. 24, 8:30 a.m.    New orders taken by durable-goods manufacturers 
      probably fell by 0.5% in January, says the MMS survey. Orders rose 3.4% in 
      November and 1.5% in December. A big increase in demand for military hardware 
      boosted the December figure, however, and those orders likely were not repeated 
      in January. The projected decline in new bookings indicates that the backlog of 
      unfilled orders fell last month after increasing slightly for four consecutive 
      Friday, Feb. 24, 8:45 a.m.    Sales of existing homes probably fell to an 
      annual rate of 3.75 million in January. Sales have zigzagged since last summer, 
      thanks to higher mortgage rates. In December, they rose 1.8%, to a 3.89 million 
      pace, after slipping 2.3% in November.

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