Vital Signs for the Week of Dec. 19

On tap: November figures on personal income and spending, producer prices, new home sales, durable goods orders, and more

The week ended Dec. 16 was a good one for U.S. markets, given the generally upbeat news on the economy. In particular, the markets took solace in the Federal Reserve's words following its quarter-point hike in its target federal funds rate. The Fed appeared to be saying that its target rate, now at 4.25%, was at or very close to a neutral level that would neither stimulate nor restrict economic growth. If so, then the Fed's year-and-a-half-long policy tightening may be close to an end.

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