Vital Signs: Job Losses Expected to Worsen

On deck: employment report, ISM indexes, construction spending, pending home sales, productivity, and personal income

We know the fourth quarter was bad. Now the data will start to give us an idea of how the first quarter is shaping up. The current betting among economists is: not well. This week offers the first round of major January indicators that will set the tone for what to expect. The Institute for Supply Management’s reports on both manufacturing and nonmanufacturing activity will be key benchmarks, but the Labor Dept.’s employment report is sure to attract the most attention.

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