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     WASHINGTON (MNI) - The following are highlights of forecasts for   
upcoming U.S. economic indicators provided by participants in the MNI   
weekly survey. The comment section presents the key elements behind the 
median forecasts.         
Industrial Production for June (percent change)                         
 Tuesday, July 17 at 9:15 a.m. ET                        Actual:        
              Median          Range                  Jun18  May18  Apr18
 Ind Prod      +0.5%       +0.4% to +0.7%               --  -0.1%  +0.9%
 Cap Util      78.2%       78.1% to 78.4%               --  77.9%  78.1%
     Comments: Industrial production is expected to rise 0.5% in June   
after a surprise decline in May on a special factor--a fire at a truck  
supply plant. Factory payrolls rose by 36,000 in June, while auto       
production jobs rose by 12,000 and the factory workweek was rose to 40.9
hours, up from 40.8 hours in May. The ISM production index rose to 62.3 
in the current month from 61.5 in the previous month. Utilities         
production is expected to flatten in the month after a further gain in  
the previous month, but with an upside risk due to warmer-than-usual    
weather. Mining production is expected to continue it's string of gain. 
Capacity utilization is forecast to rise to 78.2% from 77.9% in May.    
Housing Starts for June (annual rate, million)                          
 Wednesday, July 18 at 8:30 a.m. ET                      Actual:        
           Median            Range                   Jun18  May18  Apr18
 Starts    1.320m       1.295m to 1.325m                -- 1.350m 1.286m
     Comments: The seasonally adjusted pace of housing starts is        
expected to slow modestly to a 1.320 million annual rate in June after  
rising in May. The NAHB index fell to 68 in June from 70 in May. As     
inventories remain tight, builders will likely find it advantageous to  
boost output. The pace of building permits is expected to rise to a     
1.340 million rate from the unrevised 1.301 million rate in May.        
Weekly Jobless Claims for July 14 week                                  
 Thursday, July 19 at 8:30 a.m. ET                        Actual:       
               Median         Range                  Jul14  Jul07  Jun30
 Weekly Claims  220k      214k to 225k                  --   214k   232k
     Comments: The level of initial jobless claims is expected to       
rebound by 6,000 to 220,000 in the July 14 employment survey week after 
a surprise 18,000 decline to 214,000 in the previous week. Summer       
retooling shutdowns typically make July claims data less reliable. The  
level of claims was at 218,000 in the June 16 employment survey week.   
The four-week moving average would rise by only 500 in the coming week  
as that 218,000 level in the June 16 week drops out of the calculation, 
assuming the MNI forecast is correct and there are no revisions.        
Philadelphia Federal Reserve Index for July (diffusion index)           
 Thursday, July 19 at 8:30 a.m. ET                       Actual:        
                 Median        Range                 Jul18  Jun18  May18
 Phila Fed        22.0      18.0 to 24.5                --   19.9   34.4
     Comments: The Philadelphia Fed index is expected to rebound        
modestly to a reading of 22.0 in July after a sharp decline to 19.9 in  
Leading Indicators for June (percent change)                            
 Thursday, July 19 at 10:00 a.m. ET                      Actual:        
                 Median         Range                Jun18  May18  Apr18
 Leading Index   +0.4%       +0.4% to +0.4%             --  +0.2%  +0.4%
     Comments: The index of leading indicators is forecast to rise by   
0.4% in June. Positive contributions are expected from a rising stock   
prices and a likely rebound in factory orders. A decline in consumer    
expectations may provide some offset.                                   
--MNI Washington Bureau; +1 202-372-2121; email: