The Week Ahead
PRODUCER PRICE INDEX Wednesday, Nov. 13, 8:30 a.m.EST -- Producer prices of finished goods likely rose 0.2% in October, the same gain as in September, according to the median forecast of economists surveyed by MMS International, one of The McGraw-Hill Companies. Oil prices, however, might have caused a larger increase. Excluding food and energy, October prices probably edged up 0.2%, after a 0.3% rise in September. FOMC MEETING Wednesday, Nov. 13 -- The Federal Open Market Committee of the Federal Reserve will probably keep short-term interest rates unchanged at its policy-setting meeting. That means the federal funds rate will remain at 5.25%. RETAIL SALES Thursday, Nov. 14, 8:30 a.m.EST -- Retail sales in October probably increased a solid 0.5%, says the MMS report. Excluding cars, sales likely rose 0.4%. In September, total purchases rose 0.7%, and nonauto sales increased 0.4%. CONSUMER PRICE INDEX Thursday, Nov. 14, 8:30 a.m.EST -- Prices likely increased 0.3% in October, after a similar rise in September. Excluding food and energy, core prices likely were up 0.2%, after a 0.3% September gain. INDUSTRIAL PRODUCTION Friday, Nov. 15, 9:15 a.m.EST -- The MMS survey expects that output at factories, mines, and utilities was unchanged in October. Factory payrolls increased last month, but the workweek dropped. Production increased 0.2% in September. October's average operating rate probably fell to 83.1%, from 83.3% in September. BUSINESS INVENTORIES Friday, Nov. 15, 10 a.m.EST -- Inventories held by manufacturers, wholesalers, and retailers probably increased 0.4% in September, on top of a 0.5% gain in August. Inventory accumulation accounted for almost all of the economic growth last quarter.
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