NEW YORK ( TheStreet) -- Improvements in the housing market likely helped Home Depot (HD) - Get Report post better-than-expected quarterly results.

But, will its biggest competitorLowe's (LOW) - Get Report see the same boost?

TheStreet will be watching Lowe's second-quarter earnings on Wednesday, Aug. 19, along with other key earnings and a report by the Federal Open Market Committee (FOMC), whose work often foreshadows action by the Federal Reserve.

Lowe's will release earnings before the bell. The home improvement retailer is expected to report profits of 74 cents a share on revenue of nearly $14 billion.

TheStreet's Jim Cramer says he's not sure Lowes can keep up with Home Depot's progress.

Another big retailer, Target (TGT) - Get Report, reports its earnings before the bell, as well.

The Minneapolis-based retailer is expected to post earnings of $1.11 a share on revenue of nearly $17 billion for the second quarter.

Also due to report results before the opening bell are Staples (SPLS) and American Eagle Outfitters (AEO) - Get Report.

L Brands (LB) - Get Reportwill release earnings after the markets close.

On the economic front, at 8:30 a.m. Eastern Time, the Consumer Price Index report will be released.

The number will be closely watched to see if it moves toward the Federal Reserve's 2-percent inflation rate target, which could signal a raise in interest rates. 

And, what is likely the most highly anticipated report of the week from the Federal Reserve, FOMC will release its minutes at 2:00 p.m. Eastern Time.

For investors looking for more clues on potential changes in Fed policy, they may want to pay close attention to the Fed's minutes.