Economic Indicators and Release Dates

Below is a description of some of the major economic indicators that affect interest rates on taxable and tax-exempt securities and the dates that the indicators are released.  Also included is information relating to the Federal Open Market Committee (FOMC).  Economic indicators that will be released this week include the following: 



Release Dates & Times (All times are Eastern)

Definition and Source

Beige Book


Released two weeks prior to each Federal Open Market Committee Meeting. 

The Federal Reserve's report of "Current Economic Conditions," commonly known as the Beige Book, is published eight times per year. Each Federal Reserve Bank gathers anecdotal information on current economic conditions in its District through reports from Bank and Branch directors and interviews with key business contacts, economists, market experts, and other sources. The Beige Book summarizes this information by District and sector. [Full Reports]

Business Inventories
(Manufacturing and Trade Inventories and Sales)


10:00 a.m. around the 13th of the month

Released by the United States Census Bureau, this report is intended to provide broad and timely measures of combined changes in domestic retail trade, wholesale trade and manufacturers' activities. The report is based on the data collected from three other surveys: the Monthly Retail Trade Survey, the Monthly Wholesale Trade Survey, and the Manufacturers' Shipments, Inventories and Orders Survey.  By the time this report is published, the Monthly Wholesale Trade Survey and the Manufacturers' Shipments, Inventories and Orders Survey have been released leaving only the Monthly Retail Trade Survey as the new piece of data in the report. [Full Release

Construction Spending

10:00 a.m. on the last or first business day of the month

Each month the United States Census Bureau releases estimates of the value of total new construction for the following categories: residential, private nonresidential, farm, regulated investor-owned utilities and public. Construction cost of new single family houses started each month is estimated using housing starts and sales data from the United States Census Bureau's Survey of Construction.  Private nonresidential construction is based on a months "Construction Progress Reporting Survey" with data from McGraw-Hill Construction.
[Full Release

Consumer Confidence Surveys:

Conference Board

University of Michigan

The Consumer Board's index is released at 10:00 a.m. on the last Tuesday of the month.

The University of Michigan releases a preliminary on the second Friday of each month and a final survey on the fourth Friday of each month at 10:00 a.m. 


The Conference Board's Indices are based on a monthly survey mailed to 5,000 United States households.  The survey includes five questions regarding the health of the economy:

  1. Respondents appraisal of current business conditions.

  2. Respondents expectations regarding business conditions six months hence.

  3. Respondents appraisal of the current employment conditions.

  4. Respondents expectations regarding employment conditions six months hence.

  5. Respondents expectations regarding their total family income six months hence.

The Conference Board releases three indices (i) Consumer Confidence based on responses to the 5 questions above, (ii) Present Situation Index based on responses to question 1 and 3 and (iii) Expectations Index based on question 2, 4 and 5.  
[Full Release]


The University of Michigan's Consumer Sentiment Index is based on telephone household interviews. [Full Release]

Consumer Credit

3:00 p.m. around the 5th business day of the month

Released by the Federal Reserve, the report indicates the amount of outstanding debt of consumers.  [Full Release]

CPI: Consumer Price Index

8:30 a.m. The following are the 2024 release dates:

January 11     July 11
February 13
    Aug. 14
March 12    
  Sept. 11
April 10       
   Oct. 10
May 15          Nov. 13 
June 12      
   Dec. 11

Compiled by the United States Department of Labor, the Consumer Price Index (CPI) is a measure of the average change in prices over time of goods and services purchased by households and is an inflation indicator.  [Full Release]

Durable Goods

Manufacturers' Shipments, Inventories and Orders

Two releases per month (the advance report and the final report) at
8:30 a.m.

Released by the United States Bureau of Census, the Manufacturers' Shipments, Inventories, and Orders survey is currently the only survey that provides broad-based monthly statistical data on the economic conditions in the domestic manufacturing sector. It is designed to measure current industrial activity and to provide an indication of future production commitments. The value of shipments measures the value of goods delivered during the month by domestic manufacturers. Estimates of new orders serve as an indicator of future production commitments and represent the current shipments (sales) value of new orders received during the month, net of cancellations. [Full Release]

Employment Report

8:30 a.m. on the first Friday of the month

Compiled by the United States Department of Labor and composed of two surveys, the Current Population Survey (household survey) and the Current Employment Statistics Survey (establishment survey). The household survey provides information on the labor force, employment, and unemployment.  The establishment survey provides information on employment, hours, and earnings of workers for nonfarm payrolls.  The report is a broad indicator of economic activity and inflation. [Full Release]

Federal Open Market Committee

The 2024 meeting dates of the Federal Open Market Committee are tentatively as follows:

January 30 - January 31
March 19-20
April 30 - May 1
June 11-12
July 30-31
September 17-18
November 6-7
December 17-18

The FOMC holds eight regularly scheduled meetings per year. At these meetings, the Committee reviews economic and financial conditions, determines the appropriate stance of monetary policy, and assesses the risks to its long-run goals of price stability and sustainable economic growth. At each meeting the FOMC establishes the Federal Funds Rate.  [Statement Following Meeting]

Federal Open Market Committee Minutes

2:00 p.m. approximately three weeks after the FOMC meeting.

The minutes from each meeting of the Federal Open Market Committee are released approximately 3 weeks after the meeting.  The minutes often include indications regarding the future rate policy of the FOMC. [Minutes for each Meeting]

Gross Domestic Product (GDP)

8:30 a.m. toward the end of the month.

GDP is the market value of goods and services produced by labor and from property in the United States.  GDP is released quarterly by the United States Department of Commerce, Bureau of Economic Analysis. [Full Release]

Home Sales (Existing)

10:00 a.m. on or about the 25th of the month

Housing sales data is released by the National Association of Realtors and is based on transaction closings in a given month and indicating the total amount of sales for a year assuming that the rate of sales remains constant.  Sales include single-family homes, condominiums and co-ops.  [Full Release]

Home Sales

10:00 a.m. around the last business day of the month

Released by the United States Census Bureau in conjunction with the United States Department of Housing and Urban Development.  The report indicates (1) the number of new single-family houses sold; (2) the number of new single-family houses for sale; and (3) the median and average sales prices of new homes sold.  [Full Release]

Industrial Production

9:15 a.m. around the 15th of the month

The Federal Reserve's monthly index of industrial production and the related capacity indexes and capacity utilization rates cover manufacturing, mining, and electric and gas utilities.  The production index measures real output and is expressed as a percentage of real output in a base year, currently 2002. The capacity index, which is an estimate of sustainable potential output, is also expressed as a percentage of actual output in 2002. Data for the index is from private trade associations and government agencies.  [Full Release]

ISM Index

The Manufacturing ISM Report On Business is released on the first business day of the month at 10:00 a.m.

The ISM Services Report On Business is released on the third business day of the month at 10:00 a.m.

The Institute for Supply Management (ISM), an association of supply management professionals, releases two reports monthly: the Manufacturing ISM and the Services ISM.  The reports are based on monthly surveys to approximately 400 companies in order to determine whether the economy is expanding or contracting.  Among the items included in the survey are the following:  changes in production, new orders, new export orders, imports, employment, inventories, prices, lead-times, and the timeliness of supplier deliveries in their companies comparing the current month to the previous month. [Full Releases]

Jobless Claims

8:30 a.m. each Thursday

Initial jobless claims measures the number of filings for state jobless benefits and is provided by the United States Department of Labor. [Full Release]

Manufacturing Surveys: The Philadelphia Fed Index and Chicago PMI

Typically, the report from Philadelphia Fed is at 10:00 a.m. on the third Thursday of the month for the current month. Chicago PMI typically is on the last business day of the month for the current month.

The Federal Reserve bank in Philadelphia and National Association of Purchasing Management-Chicago release reports on economic activities in their regions.  The reports are considered good advance indicators of the economic conditions in the rest of the United States. 
[Full Report for Philadelphia]
[Full Report for Chicago PMI]

Personal Income and Personal Outlays

8:30 a.m. around the first or last business day of the month

Information released by the United States Department of Commerce's Bureau of Economic Analysis indicating changes in average personal income and expenditures.  Personal income is the dollar value of income received from all sources by individuals. Personal outlays include consumer purchases of durable and nondurable goods, and services. Also included in this report is the Implicit Price Deflator, also known as the Personal Consumption Expenditure Deflator, that is the Federal Reserve's preferred measure of inflation. [Full Release]

PPI: Producer Price Index

8:30 a.m. various days during the 3rd week of each month.

The Producer Price Index (PPI) of the Bureau of Labor Statistics  is a family of indexes that measure the average change over time in the prices received by domestic producers of goods and services.  PPIs measure price change from the perspective of the seller.  [Full Report]

Productivity and Costs

8:30 a.m. various days of the second month of the quarter

Data released by the United States Department of Labor measures the relationship between real output and the labor time (cost) involved in its production. [Full Report]

Residential Construction
(housing starts)

8:30 a.m. various days during the 3rd week of each month

Released by the United States Census Bureau News in conjunction with the United States Department of Housing and Urban Development. The report indicates the change in housing starts, building permits authorized in a given month and houses completed. [Full Release]

Retail Sales

8:30 a.m. around the 13th of the month

The United States Census Bureau produces the Annual Revision of Monthly Retail and Food Services report to provide national estimates by kind of business of annual and monthly sales for establishments classified in the retail trade and food services industries. [Full Report]

Wholesale Trade:  Sale and Inventories

10:00 a.m. around the middle of the month

Wholesale inventories is from a survey conducted by the United States Census Bureau to provide national estimates of monthly sales, end-of-month inventories, and inventory-to-sales ratios by kind of business for wholesale firms located within the United States.  The data is used by other agencies for economic analysis including The Bureau of Economic Analysis that uses the estimates as an input to estimate sales and inventories for the Gross Domestic Product. [Full Report]



About WMFS







Site Map


WM Financial Strategies
11710 Administration Drive
Suite 7
St. Louis, Missouri 63146
Phone (314) 423-2122