Key economic events for the week of March 5

March 4, 2012

It’s a relatively light week for economic news, as everyone awaits Friday’s unemployment report to see just what sort of recovery we’re dealing with.

Monday

In the morning, the Institute for Supply Management releases its business activity index for non-manufacturing sectors in January. Analysts expect modest growth in the service sector, although the expansion is likely to be somewhat muted by higher gasoline prices.

The economy might get a bit of bad news when the Census releases its data on factory orders at 10 a.m. Analysts expect the numbers to show that orders dipped about 1.5 percent in January. Earlier reports had shown a drop in orders of durable goods in January, due in part to a decline in civilian aircraft purchases.

Wednesday

In the morning, the ADP Employment report comes out. Analysts expect the numbers to show that the U.S. economy added 210,000 jobs last month, although it’s worth noting that the ADP figures have shot well wide of the government’s own jobs figures in the past three months, so this may not necessarily be a good preview of Friday’s employment report.

In the afternoon, the Federal Reserve’s consumer credit report for January is expected to show consumers easing up on borrowing after the holiday season.

Thursday

The number of new unemployment claims has been trending downward over the past few weeks — nearing a four-year low of 351,000 last week. Analysts expect another healthy week of 351,000 new jobless claims this time around.

Friday

The Bureau of Labor Statistics releases its monthly employment report at 8:30 a.m. Analysts polled by Bloomberg expect the economy to have added 210,000 jobs last month, with unemployment holding steady at 8.3 percent. Last week’s surprisingly strong data on auto sales, however, offer some hope that the jobs report could beat expectations.

— Brad Plumer

No must reads this week-djb

Find links at washingtonpost.com/mustreads

Comments
Show Comments
Most Read Business