This Week: Housing starts, earnings from AmEx and Mattel

FILE- In this Feb. 26, 2018, file photo, an unfinished house is for sale in Franklin Lakes, N.J. On Tuesday, April 17, the Commerce Department reports

FILE- In this Feb. 26, 2018, file photo, an unfinished house is for sale in Franklin Lakes, N.J. On Tuesday, April 17, the Commerce Department reports

A look at some of the key business events and economic indicators upcoming this week:

BREAKING GROUND

Builders are putting up more single-family houses to help meet demand amid a national shortage of homes for sale.

Construction starts of single-family houses rose 2.9 percent in February, though overall housing starts declined because builders broke ground on fewer apartment complexes. Did the trend continue last month? Find out Tuesday, when the Commerce Department issues its latest tally of newly started residential construction projects.

Housing starts, monthly, seasonally adjusted annual rate:

Oct. 1,261,000

Nov. 1,299,000

Dec. 1,207,000

Jan. 1,329,000

Feb. 1,236,000

March. (est.) 1,257,000

Source: FactSet

MEET THE NEW BOSS

American Express reports its first-quarter results Wednesday.

This will be the first quarterly snapshot from the credit card issuer since Steve Squeri took over as chairman and CEO following the retirement of Kenneth Chenault at the end of January. AmEx's cardholders have been spending more and carrying balances longer, trends that helped boost the company's earnings and revenue last year.

TEARS IN TOYLAND?

Wall Street expects another discouraging quarterly report card from the nation's largest toy manufacturer.

Financial analysts predict Mattel will report Thursday that its loss widened in the first quarter versus a year earlier. The Barbie-maker is also projected to show a decline in revenue. Mattel has been struggling due to a weak appetite for some of its brands, which also include Hot Wheels and card game Uno. It's also been shaken by the pending liquidation of retailer Toys R Us.