Today's market braces for another round of economic data coupled with a few earnings announcements. The durable goods orders report, considered an important factory-sector indicator, arrives on the Street before the opening bell. The data is expected to come in unchanged from last month's report, which showed a reading of -6.5%.

The

BTM-UBSW Weekly Chain Store Sales Index and the

Redbook Retail Average are also scheduled for release today. These two timely indicators should give us the skinny on consumer spending.

Bringing up the rear is the

consumer confidence index, which will also provide insight into the latest consumer moods.

In earnings news, handheld PC-maker

Palm

( PALM) and greeting card giant

American Greetings

(AM) - Get Report

are slated to issue their quarterly results.

Ahead of earnings, the Santa Clara, CA-based Palm was

sued for patent infringement by computer systems maker

NCR

(NCR) - Get Report

. Palm intends on battling NCR in court stating that there is no validity to the allegations.

Shares of Palm traded down 0.4% to finish at $14.48 yesterday; American Greetings closed down 0.3% to $14.34.

Today also marks the end of the lockup period for the tech startups listed below.

Expected Earnings Reports

This table includes S&P 500 companies only. Dates are as expected according to First Call/Thomson Financial, and may change. The full week's earnings calendar is published separately.

Economic Data

(

Forecasts are from

Reuters

. Times are Eastern. For a longer-term economic calendar and more, see

TSC's

Economic Databank.

)

  • 8:30 a.m.: Durable goods orders for February. Source: Census Bureau. Forecast: xx. Previous: +0.3%. Ex-transportation: Forecast: unchanged. Previous: -6.5%.
  • 9 a.m.: BTM-UBSW Weekly Chain Store Retail Index for the week ended March 24. Source: Forecast: N/A. Previous: -0.3%.
  • 9 a.m.: Rebook Retail Avearage for the week through March 24 vs. February. Source: LJR Redbook. Forecast: n.a.. Previous: +0.5%.
  • 10 a.m.: Consumer Confidence Index for March. Source: Conference Board. Forecast: 104.5. Previous: 106.8.

IPO Lockups Expiring

(TheStreet.com's

Michael Falbo, who writes a column for

TSC's

ipoPros.com subsidiary, keeps a close eye on lockup expirations every week. For more on lockup expirations and why they matter, check out Ben Holmes' primer on the subject. The full current lockup expiration list is published separately. For information on IPO pricings, filings and aftermarket activity, plus a calendar of upcoming IPOs, check out

TheStreet.com's

IPO data section.

)

Lockup End

Deal Name

Symbol

Lead Underwriter

3/27/01

AtRoad

(ARDI:Nasdaq)

Credit Suisse First Boston

3/27/01

Proton Energy

(PRTN:Nasdaq)

Morgan Stanley Dean Witter

3/27/01

Simple Technology

(STEC:Nasdaq)

Lehman Brothers

3/27/01

Vastera

(VAST:Nasdaq)

Deutsche Alex Brown

IPO Quiet Periods Expiring

(TheStreet.com's

Ben Holmes, who heads

TSC's

ipoPros.com subsidiary, keeps a close eye on quiet period expirations every week. For more on quiet periods and why they matter, check out Holmes' primer on the subject. For information on IPO pricings, filings and aftermarket activity, plus a calendar of upcoming IPOs, check out

TheStreet.com's

IPO data section.

)

Quiet Period End

Deal Name

Symbol

Lead Underwriter

3/27/01

AFC Enterprises

(AFCE:NYSE)

Goldman Sachs

Speeches & Testimony

    Fed chairman Alan Greenspan speaks at the 2001 National Association for Business Economics Conference on the topic of monetary policy for a growing economy in Washington, D.C. at 8:45 a.m.