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Health Care Vote Critical to Coming Week

That's not to say that the vote on health care will render a week's worth of economic data meaningless. Suskind says that with such a large focus on what the Federal Reserve's next step will be, macroeconomic numbers will be heavily scrutinized.

The first release, existing-home sales data for February, will arrive Tuesday at 10 a.m. EDT alongside the Federal Housing Finance Agency's home price index for January.

Wednesday's release schedule is headlined by the February read on durable goods orders, due at 8:30 a.m. EDT. Investors will also get new-home sales statistics for February Wednesday, as well as weekly crude inventory data from the Energy Department.

Jobs data will be in focus Thursday with the Labor Department's weekly initial jobless claims report due at 8:30 a.m. EDT, followed Friday by the government's last estimate on fourth-quarter gross domestic product growth and the final read on the University of Michigan's consumer sentiment index for March.

On the earnings front, one S&P 500 company will report fourth-quarter results and another 13 will open the books on their first quarter. Among them are Best Buy (BBY - Get Report), Oracle (ORCL - Get Report), Tiffany (TIF - Get Report), Adobe Systems (ADBE), Walgreen (WAG), General Mills (GIS - Get Report) and Lennar (LEN - Get Report).

Market analysts also note that the end of the first quarter is on the horizon. With the U.S. averages near their highest level for the year, they argue that window dressing could begin to come into play in the coming week.

"Are people going to take profits or try to catch up with this market? When does the window dressing start?" Suskind asks. "A lack of volume recently may mean more cash coming in for another leg up as they chase the rally."

Pavlik says that money is coming out of money market funds and going into stocks, making him less concerned over the long term about quarter-end window dressing. "Again, it's short-term noise," he says.

Instead, Pavlik says he will be closely watching action in the bond market, as a supply of $175 billion in securities will be offered in the next five trading sessions.
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AET $114.62 0.72%
BBY $32.66 -2.40%
GIS $61.26 0.21%
HUM $177.92 0.20%
LEN $45.79 -4.00%


Chart of I:DJI
DOW 17,830.76 -210.79 -1.17%
S&P 500 2,075.81 -19.34 -0.92%
NASDAQ 4,805.2910 -57.85 -1.19%

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