Money

Wall Street's fear gauge, Comey in the hot seat, the selfie craze and more

Traders work on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange.
Bryan R. Smith | Getty Images
Traders work on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange.

The VIX stays low

What's happening: Wall Street's fear gauge, the VIX, is the lowest it's been in years
Why it matters: A low VIX suggests investors are not concerned about the rise in geopolitics or the recent dysfunction in Washington, but that could be changing

A well-watched fear index, the CBOE Volatility Index, or VIX, is getting low. Typically, a dip in the VIX tells us that stock market investors are not stressing over global risks like North Korea, though the country continues to test missiles. Sounds great, right? But skeptics argue that there are more than enough reasons for it to flip out, especially given the recent events in Washington and the "heightened" political environment.

Any spike in the VIX could send stocks lower and have a direct impact on your 401(k), so keep an eye on this fear gauge.

Former FBI director, James Comey.
Anadolu Agency | Getty Images
Former FBI director, James Comey.

Comey in the hot seat

What's happening: After being fired by President Trump, former FBI director James Comey is expected to appear in front of the Senate Intelligence Committee this week
Why it matters: This will be the first appearance of Comey since being fired, "Apprentice"-style

Will his attendance as a private citizen, as opposed to as FBI director, allow him to share more, or be more candid, about the investigations into Trump's ties to Russia? That's the question. The Senate Intelligence Committee will likely try to find out.

Comey could decline to appear or opt for a closed session. But, however this goes down, some fear that this investigation could finally cause the spike in the VIX and bring an end to the market's recent "Trump Rally." And anything that spooks the markets could affect your 401(k).

Supporters cheer during Rouhani's presidential election rally in Tehran.
Anadolu Agency | Getty Images
Supporters cheer during Rouhani's presidential election rally in Tehran.

Iran goes to the polls and America is watching

What's happening: Iranian presidential election is being held this week and current President Rouhani may not be re-elected
Why it matters: The outcome could have an impact on the current U.S.-Iran nuclear deal and the price of oil

Current President Rouhani championed the U.S.-Iran nuclear deal in 2015. Since then, Rouhani has been facing tough criticism by opposition candidate and hard-line Islamic cleric Raisi calling for Iran to distance itself from the West.

Some Iranians also say the nuclear deal and the sanction relief haven't helped the economy and many citizens are frustrated. If Rouhani loses to Raisi, a break-up of the current nuclear deal may follow, which Middle East experts say could reignite U.S.-Iran tensions and would likely lead to Iran's oil being pushed off the international energy market.

Bottom line? Lower supply, higher demand means oil prices go up, which means pain for you, potentially, at the gas pump.

Shoppers selecting plywood in a Home Depot store in Miami.
Gaston De Cardenas | AFP | Getty Images
Shoppers selecting plywood in a Home Depot store in Miami.

On the home front

What's happening: Home Deport gives Wall Street its quarterly report
Why it matters: Earnings from the largest home improvement retailer will give us a read on the state of housing

Home Depot will deliver its first quarter earnings report on Tuesday. The strength of the home improvement giant serves as a barometer for the state of housing generally — its share price has more than tripled in the past five years as real estate has soared.

Investors will now be looking for signs that the strength in housing, and the rise in the share price, can continue.

Chrissy Teigen and John Legend attend the White Party Dinner benefiting The Andrea Bocelli Foundation and The Muhammad Ali Parkinson Center.
Andrew Goodman | Getty Images
Chrissy Teigen and John Legend attend the White Party Dinner benefiting The Andrea Bocelli Foundation and The Muhammad Ali Parkinson Center.

Beauty brands report their earnings

What's happening: Beauty & cosmetics industry are cashing in on selfie-takers, and Wall Street is starting to take notice
Why it matters: Your lipstick might be getting more expensive

Blame Kendall Jenner, Chrissy Teigen and all the other social media influencers who post millions of pictures of themselves. They've inspired a whole selfie generation and, funny enough, the big winner might be the cosmetics industry.

Some of the up-and-coming beauty brands, like Ulta, e.l.f beauty and Cota, are benefiting from the selfie craze. Elf reported earnings this week and Ulta Beauty will report the end of the month. And, 'til the smartphone changes or evolves, experts say the selfie craze will continue — so all of this might drive up the price of your make-up.