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Christmas Gift Guide
Tech Industry

The week ahead: Pentium 4 PCs hit shelves

Computers powered by Intel's new chip will debut Monday, just in time for the holiday season. It's also a short week: The markets are closed for Thanksgiving and will close early Friday.

Following are some of the notable tech-related events scheduled for the week of Nov. 20 through Nov. 24.

Computers powered by the Pentium 4 chip will debut Monday, just in time for the holiday season.

The next generation in the Intel Pentium processor line, computers equipped with the Pentium 4 chip promise to be faster and better than those that came before them. But the computers are controversial because they will initially work only with relatively expensive Rambus memory.

While a number of companies will release PCs for the business market, most Pentium 4 computers initially will be targeted at consumers. Dell Computer, Compaq Computer and Gateway are among the companies releasing consumer models.

The New York Stock Exchange will be closed Thursday for the Thanksgiving holiday. The exchange will also shut down at 1 p.m. EST on Friday.

The information was gathered from First Call/Thomson Financial, Hoover's Online, CCBN's StreetEvents and CNET Investor.

Other events scheduled this week:

Tech Events

Monday, Nov. 20

  • Software.com and Phone.com will hold their merger completion conference call at 8 a.m. EST. The companies agreed to merge in early August in a $6.4 billion stock deal.

Thursday, Nov. 23

  • Thanksgiving.

Friday, Nov. 24

  • The New York Stock Exchangecloses at 1 p.m. EST.
Earnings

Monday, Nov. 20

  • Lernout & Hauspie Speech makes speech recognition, dictation and translation software. Per-share consensus estimate: 13 cents.

  • Alltel provides local, long-distance and cellular telephone services as well as Internet access and paging. Per-share consensus estimate: 63 cents.

  • Fatbrain.com allows consumers to download digital versions of books to personal computers. Per-share consensus estimate: loss of 80 cents.

  • Agilent Technologies makes semiconductors as well as equipment to test semiconductors and various networks. Per-share consensus estimate: N/A.

Tuesday, Nov. 21
  • Intuit makes personal and small-business financial software including Quicken and QuickBooks. Per-share consensus estimate: loss of 16 cents.

  • Finisar makes equipment that enables high speed data communication over local area networks (LANs) and storage area networks (SANs). Per-share consensus estimate: 3 cents.

Economic Reports

Tuesday, Nov. 21

  • The Trade Balance, or the value of U.S. imports subtracted from exports, is expected to widen to a deficit of -$30.6 billion in September from -$29.4 billion in August as reported monthly by the Commerce Department.

  • The Treasury Budget is a monthly account of the surplus or deficit of the U.S. government. The deficit is expected to decrease in October to -$13.9 billion from -$26.7 billion in September.

Wednesday, Nov. 22
  • Initial Claims refers to the number of people who filed for unemployment benefits each week as reported by the Department of Labor. Claims for the week of Nov. 13 will be compared with the previous week's 326,000 jobless claims.

Friday, Nov. 24
  • The Michigan Consumer Sentiment Index is a measure of consumer confidence as reported monthly by the University of Michigan. Experts expect the index to slip to 106.3 in November from October's 107.7

Also this week

  • Technology IPOs include Telefonica Moviles, a Spanish telecom company that plans to raise $3.1 billion, and Telekom Austria, Austria's largest telecommunications company, which plans to raise $2.5 billion.