But investors are hoping to see strong results from big banks this week. Healthy earnings could be a good economic sign, especially if the banks report solid growth in their mortgage lending business. A rebound in housing, after all, has been key to the economic recovery.
JPMorgan Chase(JPM) and Wells Fargo(WFC) report their fourth quarter earnings Tuesday. Bank of America(BAC), Goldman Sachs(GS), Citigroup(C), and Morgan Stanley(MS) will also release earnings later in the week.
But there will be more economic data this week as well. December retail sales figures will released by the government on Tuesday. That will help give investors a better sense of how the holiday shopping season shaped up.
A key measure of inflation is due out Thursday, when the government will release the Consumer Price Index for December.
And on Friday, the government will release data on housing starts.
But with the Federal Reserve finally scaling back on, or tapering, its bond-buying program last month, interest rates have been ticking higher. So economists will be looking for any signs of a housing slowdown if demand for mortgages cool. There are also concerns that the rebound in home prices may make it more difficult to entice new buyers.
"The rise in mortgage rates and house prices means that valuation and affordability metrics have become less favorable," Capital Economics analysts wrote in a research note Friday. However, they added that "the recovery in housing market activity is not coming off the rails."