The Week Ahead
LEADING INDICATORS Monday, June 3, 8:30 a.m. edt -- The index of leading indicators compiled by the Conference Board likely increased 0.2% in April, the same small gain posted in March. That's the median forecast of economists surveyed by MMS International, one of The McGraw-Hill Companies. NAPM SURVEY Monday, June 3, 10 a.m. edt -- The MMS economists expect that the National Association of Purchasing Management's business activity index probably increased to 51% in May, from 50.1% in April. A reading above 50% suggests that the industrial sector is expanding. The NAPM index had fallen below 50% in each month of the first quarter, brought down by weak production, orders, and employment. CONSTRUCTION SPENDING Monday, June 3, 10 a.m. edt -- Construction outlays were likely unchanged in April. That follows a large 3.1% increase in March, with gains in residential, commercial, and public-works projects. FACTORY INVENTORIES Tuesday, June 4, 10 a.m. edt -- Factory inventories probably rose 0.3% in April, after no change in March. That's suggested by a gain in factory output. April orders likely fell 0.8%, after rising 1.5% in March. EMPLOYMENT Friday, June 7, 8:30 a.m. edt -- The MMS median forecast calls for an increase of 165,000 new nonfarm jobs in May. In April, payrolls added a negligible 2,000 workers. The unemployment rate likely edged up to 5.5% last month, from a 5.4% reading in April. INSTALLMENT CREDIT Friday, June 7, 3 p.m. edt -- Consumers probably added $8 billion in new credit in April, says the MMS forecast. Debt increased by just $6.4 billion in March but averaged a large $11.5 billion in January and February. Installment debt continues to rise despite slowing retail sales.
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