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Repeats Story Initially Transmitted at 22:06 GMT Dec 17/17:06 EST Dec 17
     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.         
Housing Starts for November (annual rate, million) 
 Tuesday, December 18 at 8:30 a.m. ET                    Actual:        
           Median            Range                   Nov18  Oct18  Sep18
 Starts    1.220m      1.200m to 1.239m                 -- 1.228m 1.210m 
     Comments: The seasonally adjusted pace of housing starts is 
expected to slow very slightly to a 1.220 million annual rate in 
November after a modest October rebound. The NAHB index fell sharply to 
60 in November from 68 in October. Soft demand will likely restrain home 
building in the short term. The pace of building permits is expected to 
decline further to a 1.253 million annual rate. Weather effects and the 
California wildfires should translate into increased homebuilding in the 
coming months. 
Existing-home Sales for November (annual rate)                           
 Wednesday, December 19 at 10:00 a.m. ET                 Actual:
                 Median       Range                  Nov18  Oct18  Sep18
 Home Resales     5.17m  5.13m to 5.24m                 --  5.22m  5.15m
     Comments: The pace of existing home sales is expected to fall back 
to a 5.17 million annual rate in November after rising to 5.22 million 
in October. Pending home sales plunged by 2.6% in October and are well 
below their year-ago levels, a negative indicator for already soft 
existing home sales. 
Weekly Jobless Claims for December 15 week                                
 Thursday, December 20 at 8:30 a.m. ET                   Actual:       
               Median         Range                  Dec15  Dec08  Dec01
 Weekly Claims   225k     220k to 225k                  --   206k   233k
     Comments: The level of initial jobless claims is expected to rise 
significantly to a 225,000 reading in the December 15 employment survey 
week after a sharp decrease of 27,000 to 206,000 level in the previous 
week. Claims were at a level of 225,000 in the November 17 employment 
survey week. The prevalence of holidays in November and December make 
seasonal adjustment difficult at the end of the year. The four-week 
moving average would be unchanged in the coming week as the 225,000 
level in the November 17 week rolls out of the calculation, assuming the 
MNI forecast is correct and there are no revisions. 
Philadelphia Federal Reserve Index for December (diffusion index)
 Thursday, December 20 at 8:30 a.m. ET                   Actual:        
                 Median        Range                 Dec18  Nov18  Oct18
 Phila Fed         15.0    14.0 to 16.0                 --   12.9   22.2
     Comments: The Philadelphia Fed index is expected to partially 
rebound to a reading of 15.0 in December after falling sharply to 12.9 
in November. 
Leading Indicators for November (percent change)
 Thursday, December 20 at 10:00 a.m. ET                  Actual:
                 Median         Range                Nov18  Oct18  Sep18
 Leading Index     Flat     Flat to Flat                --  +0.1%  +0.6%
     Comments: The index of leading indicators is forecast to hold 
steady in November after a modest 0.1% gain in October. The stock market 
decline, a dip in confidence, and a jump in initial jobless claims are 
key negative factors. 
Durable Goods Orders for November (percent change)
 Friday, December 21 at 8:30 a.m. ET                     Actual:        
               Median         Range                  Nov18  Oct18  Sep18 
 New Orders      Flat    -0.6% to +2.0%                 --  -4.3%   Flat 
 Ex-Transport   +0.4%    -0.6% to +0.7%                 --  +0.2%  -0.5%
     Comments: Durable goods are expected to be unchanged in November 
after a revised 4.3% decline in October. Boeing reported 51 orders in 
November, up sharply from 18 orders in October, but seasonal adjustment 
issues could translate to another transportation decline. Durable goods 
orders excluding transportation orders are expected to rise by 0.4%. 
GDP for Third Quarter (third estimate)
 Friday, December 21 at 8:30 a.m. ET                     Actual:        
               Median         Range                  3Q18t  3Q18s   2Q18
 GDP            +3.5%    +3.5% to +3.6%                 --  +3.5%  +4.2% 
 Chain Prices   +1.7%    +1.7% to +1.7%                 --  +1.7%  +3.0%
     Comments: Third quarter GDP is expected to be unrevised at a 3.5% 
increase, while the chain price index is expected to be unrevised at a 
1.7% pace. Looking ahead, analysts see fourth quarter GDP growth 
accelerating from the third quarter. 
Personal Income for November (percent change)                          
 Friday, December 21 at 10:00 a.m. ET                     Actual:        
               Median         Range                  Nov18  Oct18  Sep18
 Income         +0.3%    +0.2% to +0.3%                 --  +0.5%  +0.2% 
 Spending       +0.4%    +0.3% to +0.4%                 --  +0.6%  +0.2%
 Core Prices    +0.2%    +0.1% to +0.2%                 --  +0.1%  +0.2%
     Comments: Personal income is expected to rise by only 0.3% in 
November after a 0.5% gain in October. Payrolls rose by only 155,000, 
hourly earnings rose by 0.2% and average weekly hours fell to 34.4 
hours. Current dollar PCE is forecast to rise by 0.4% after a 0.6% 
October gain, but with some upside risk. Total retail sales were up only 
0.2% in the month after a 1.1% October gain. Sales were also up 0.2% in 
November excluding a 0.2% gain in motor vehicle sales, but there were 
solid gains in most of the other categories, especially nonstore 
retailers. Retail sales excluding autos, gas, building materials and 
food services were up 0.9% after a 0.7% gain in October. The core PCE 
price index is expected to post a 0.2% increase in November which would 
allow the year/year rate to tick to 1.9% from 1.8% in the previous 
month. Core prices were up only 0.1% month/month in November 2017. 
University of Michigan Survey for December (final)          
 Friday, December 21 at 10:00 a.m. ET                     Actual:
                Median        Range                 Dec18f Dec18p  Nov18
 Consumer Sent    97.0    96.5 to 97.5                  --   97.5   97.5
     Comments: The Michigan Sentiment index is expected to be revised 
down to a reading of 97.0 from 97.5 in November.
--MNI Washington Bureau; +1 (973) 494-2611; email:

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