Business Week Index: The Week Ahead
FEDERAL BUDGET Monday, July 24 -- The Treasury Dept. will probably report a surplus of $15.5 billion in June, according to the median forecast of economists surveyed by MMS International, one of the McGraw-Hill Companies. Receipts likely rose last month since quarterly tax payments are due in the last month of each quarter. Washington was in the black by $14.8 billion in June, 1994. EMPLOYMENT COSTS Tuesday, July 25, 8:30 a.m. -- Wages and benefits in the private sector probably increased by 0.8% in the second quarter, faster than the 0.6% gain in the first quarter. That's suggested by the recent pickup in wage growth. Still, for the year ended in the second quarter, compensation likely grew by 2.9%, the same modest advance as in the first. CONSUMER CONFIDENCE Tuesday, July 25, 10 a.m. -- The Conference Board's index of consumer confidence likely bounced back to a reading of 94 in July after the index dropped to 92.8 in June from 102 in May. A stronger job market is boosting consumers' spirits. DURABLE GOODS ORDERS Thursday, July 27, 8:30 a.m. -- New orders for durable goods probably rose 0.5% in June, says the MMS survey. Orders jumped an unexpected 2.7% in May, after falling for three months in a row. GROSS DOMESTIC PRODUCT Friday, July 28, 8:30 a.m. -- The MMS median forecast expects that the economy grew at an annual rate of 0.5% in the second quarter. But the forecasts range from a 1% drop to a 2.7% rise, which would equal the solid increase in first-quarter GDP. Slower inventory growth and a wider foreign trade deficit probably held down GDP growth. Demand, though slower than in 1994, should show no signs of slipping to a recessionary crawl. Inflation, as measured by the GDP deflator, likely rose at a 2.8% annual rate from 3.1% in the first quarter.
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