The Week Ahead
FEDERAL BUDGET Monday, Feb. 23, 2 p.m. EST -- The Treasury Dept. will probably announce a surplus of $22 billion in January, says the median forecast of economists surveyed by Standard & Poor's MMS, a unit of The McGraw-Hill Companies. That's bigger than the $13.4 billion windfall of January, 1997. The Clinton Administration has predicted a $10 billion surplus for fiscal 1998. HUMPHREY-HAWKINS TESTIMONY Tuesday, Feb. 24 -- Federal Reserve Chairman Alan Greenspan will give his semiannual testimony on monetary policy and the economic outlook before the House of Representatives. He is scheduled to repeat his testimony before the Senate on Feb. 25. CONSUMER PRICE INDEX Tuesday, Feb. 24, 8:30 a.m. EST -- Consumer prices of all goods and services probably increased by just 0.1% in January, says the MMS forecast, the same as in December. Excluding food and energy, core prices likely rose 0.2%, also as in December. Beginning with this report, the Labor Dept. will introduce a new geographic-area sample, revised categories, and updated expenditure weights. CONSUMER CONFIDENCE Tuesday, Feb. 24, 10 a.m. EST -- The Conference Board's index of consumer confidence likely rebounded to 129.5 in February, after falling nine points in January, to 127.3. DURABLE GOODS ORDERS Thursday, Feb. 26, 8:30 a.m. EST -- New orders for durable goods probably increased 1% in January, after a drop in transportation equipment bookings led a 6.1% plunge in December orders. GROSS DOMESTIC PRODUCT Friday, Feb. 27, 8:30 a.m. EST -- The MMS median forecast expects only a small revision in economic growth in the fourth quarter. Real GDP likely grew at a 4.1% annual rate, instead of the 4.3% pace reported by the Commerce Dept. a month ago.
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