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Economic Calendar for 03/08/2011

March 8, 2011

stock tradingThe first report of the day at 7:30 a.m. ET is the Small Business Optimism Index, produced by the National Federation of Independent Business. There are several components to this report, which is regarded as an important gauge of the health of smaller businesses.

The index came in at 94.1 for February. A reading higher than this for March would be bullish while a lower reading–particularly one below 90–would be bearish.

At 7:45 a.m. ET, the ICSC/Goldman Store Sales report will be released. There are two parts to the report, the week-over-week and the year-over-year comparisons. Most traders focus on the year-over-year number because it is a better indicator of the longer-term trend.

The last week-over-week change came in at -0.5 percent. The year-over-year data in the previous report showed a gain of 3.3 percent.

Redbook Store Sales will be reported at 8:55 a.m. ET. As with the ICSC-Goldman report, there are two components to watch. One is the more volatile month-over-month change, and the other is the year-over-year comparison, which shows the broader trend best.

The last month-over-month change was a gain of 1.6 percent. The previous report’s year-over-year data showed an increase of 3 percent. Negative numbers in either series would be bearish.

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