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The Week Ahead


Business Week Index

THE WEEK AHEAD

RETAIL SALES

Tuesday, Feb. 27, 8:30 a.m.EST -- Retail sales probably fell 0.2% in January,

according to the median forecast of economists surveyed by MMS International,

one of The McGraw-Hill Companies. Sales edged up a small 0.3% in December, but

the blizzard kept many shoppers stuck at home for part of January. In

particular, vehicle purchases fell. Excluding cars, retail sales probably

increased 0.1% in January, after rising 0.2% in December.

PRODUCER PRICE INDEX

Tuesday, Feb. 27, 8:30 a.m.EST -- Producer prices of finished goods likely rose

0.4% in January, after rising 0.5% in December.

CONSUMER CONFIDENCE

Tuesday, Feb. 27, 10 a.m.EST -- The Conference Board's index of consumer

confidence likely rebounded to 89 in February, after dropping 12 points to 87

in January.

CONSUMER PRICE INDEX

Wednesday, Feb. 28, 8:30 a.m.EST -- Consumer prices increased 0.3% in January,

after edging up 0.2% in December, forecasts the MMS survey. Excluding food and

energy, prices likely rose 0.2% in January, on top of a 0.1% gain in December.

INTERNATIONAL TRADE

Wednesday, Feb. 28, 8:30 a.m.EST -- The trade deficit for goods and services

likely widened to $8.2 billion in December. The gap narrowed sharply to $7.1

billion in November, from $8.2 billion in October.

BUSINESS INVENTORIES

Wednesday, Feb. 28, 10 a.m.EST -- Inventories held by manufacturers,

wholesalers, and retailers probably grew 0.1% in December, says the MMS survey,

the same gain as in November.

NAPM SURVEY

Friday, Mar. 1, 10 a.m.EST -- The National Association of Purchasing

Management's industrial index likely stood at 45.5% in February, hardly better

than the recessionary 44.2% reading in January.


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