Stocks traded mixed on Monday as investors looked ahead at a jammed packed week of economic data, corporate quarterly earnings results and the Federal Open Market Committee's meeting this week; all things that will give the market more outlook direction. Traders also are cautiously optimistic towards the Congressional debate over President Joe Biden's $1.9 trillion stimulus package in the week ahead.

The S&P 500 and Nasdaq posted a volatile session on Monday, with both benchmarks turning negative intraday, but ultimately climbing higher in afternoon as stimulus sentiment remained optimistic. The tech-heavy Nasdaq closed at a record high on positive FAANG stock outlooks.

13 Dow components and 111 S&P 500 companies are scheduled to report quarter earnings in the busy week ahead, including Apple (AAPL  ), Microsoft (MSFT  ), Tesla (TSLA  ), McDonald's (MCD  ), Honeywell (HON  ), Caterpillar (CAT  ), and Boeing (BA  ).

Here's how the market settled to start the week:

S&P 500 Index (SPY  ): +0.36% or +13.89 points to 3,855.36

Dow Jones Industrial Average (DIA  ): -0.12% or -37.04 points to 30,959.94

Nasdaq Composite Index (QQQ  ): +0.69% or +92.93 points to 13,635.99

For Stocks, GameStop (GME  ) shares took a wild ride on Monday, soaring more than 140% to top $150 at one point as a group of retail investors active in online chat rooms sought to squeeze out short sellers. The stock then fell, briefly turning negative, but ultimately finishing the session 18% higher. Shares of other short stocks like Bed Bath and Beyond (BBBY  ) and AMC Entertainment (AMC  ) closed 1.6% and 25.9% higher due to the volatile trading session.

For Sector Performance, sectors on the S&P 500 ended mostly higher, with Utilities (XLU  ) leading gains by finishing up almost 2% higher. Energy (XLE  ), Financials (XLF  ), Industrials (XLI  ) and Materials (XLB  ) were the only industries to close in negative territory.

For Commodities and Currency, the U.S. Dollar (UUP  ) rose on Monday as volatility in global stock markets weakened risk sentiment. The dollar index, which tracks the greenback against other rival currencies, was up about 2% higher at 90.393. Gold (GLD  ) prices pared gains on Monday on the stronger dollar, but ongoing stimulus optimism kept losses at a minimum. Spot gold increased 0.1% to $1,854.81 per ounce, while U.S. gold futures settled 0.1% lower to $1,855.20 per ounce. Crude oil futures climbed higher as outlook sentiment turned positive, but demand fears by coronavirus lockdown limited gains. International benchmark Brent Crude (BNO  ) rose by $0.31 to $55.72 per barrel, while domestic index West Texas Intermediate (USO  ) gained 0.96% higher at $52.77 each.

For Tuesday, market participants will focus on January's final consumer confidence index reading, as well as quarterly earnings from companies like Microsoft and Johnson & Johnson (JNJ  ).