Today's Economic Data Highlights

ISM manufacturing, construction outlays, vehicle sales (snow will be blamed), and the weekly confidence survey…Very small POMO today as the Fed purchases just $1-2 billion in TIPS.
10:00: ISM manufacturing index for Jan…upside risks.  This should be a solid report on momentum in the US manufacturing sector.  While the higher-than-expected Chicago result was enough to prompt an upward revision to Goldman's point estimate of 57.5, it does suggest that the risks lie to the high side of that figure.
Median forecast (of 78) 58, ranging from 56 to 59.5, last 58.5 (revised from 57.0). 
10:00: Construction outlays for Dec…which way?  Most forecasters anticipate a small increase in outlays, but there are some expectations of significant declines.  Our model puts us at the upper end of the range, though without a high degree of conviction.
Median forecast (of 49): +0.1%, ranging from -1.3% to +0.5%; last +0.4%.
Late morning/early afternoon: Lightweight vehicle sales for Jan…hurt by poor weather and limited supply? Anecdotal reports from the manufacturers suggest a modest hit to sales from poor weather and tight inventories for popular models, but others see a firmer outcome.
For total sales: median forecast (of 38): 12.6mm, ranging from 11.8mm to 12.9mm; last: 12.53mm.
For domestic: median forecast (of 17): 9.42mm, ranging from 9.2mm to 9.7mm; last 9.46mm.
17:00: ABC consumer comfort index…faint signal through a lot of noise.  If you squint real hard, this index exhibits a very small upward trend from early 2008 on, but it has backed off of a 2½-year high over the past two weeks.


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