Part of the 112th Congress returns to work this week in a chastened atmosphere following the shooting of Rep. Gabrielle Giffords (D-Ariz.) on Saturday. French President Nicolas Sarkozy is in Washington for talks with President Obama early in the week, we get reports on prices and the Fed's balance sheet in midweek, and on Friday we learn about CPI on the same day that earnings season begins in earnest with JP Morgan Chase’s earnings.

On Monday, Jan. 10, President Obama meets with the visiting French president Sarkozy in Washington to discuss monetary policy and Europe’s bailouts, among other issues.

Tuesday, Jan. 11 brings the return of the House of Representatives, which convenes for two days business, including a resolution Wednesday expressing its outrage on the shooting of Rep. Giffords, who on Jan. 7 introduced a bill to cut Representatives’ pay by 5% this year (the Senate doesn’t return until Tuesday, Jan. 24).

Economic reports include the wholesale trade numbers for November, retail sales reports from ICSC-Goldman Sachs and Redbook, and the NFIB Small Business Optimism Index,. Two investing conferences are held for institutional investors: the Needham Growth Conference in New York (Jan. 11-13) and the ICR XChange conference in Dana Point, Calif.

On Wednesday, Jan. 12, we hear about the state of the real estate market via the Mortgage Bankers Association new applications, we hear about trade through release of import and export prices from the Bureau of Labor Statistics for December, and we get a take on the economy through release of the Federal Reserve’s beige book.

Thursday, Jan. 13 brings release of the producer price index (PPI) for December, along with weekly jobless claims and November international trade figures from the Census Bureau.

We learn about the Fed’s balance sheet, along with the status of the money supply. In Washington, the CFTC meets to consider new rules under Dodd-Frank on derivatives trading and Fed Chairman Bernanke speaks at a FDIC-sponsored event in Arlington, Va., appearing with FDIC Chairman Sheila Bair, while overseas the European Central Bank and the Bank of England hold policy meetings.

The big market-moving news on Friday, Jan. 14 is likely to be release of December’s Consumer Price Index (CPI), along with reports on retail sales, industrial production and the consumer confidence index from the University of Michigan/Thomson Reuters.

JP Morgan Chase is scheduled to release its 4th quarter and full-year earnings. The Republican party is scheduled to elect a new chairman. There are some indications that the SEC will beat its Jan. 21 deadline under Dodd-Frank and deliver its report to Congress on an SRO for advisors.