Chipmaker Intel, up 0.7 percent at $22.70, is scheduled to report after Tuesday's market close, while results from Google, up 2.2 percent at $585.33 and the biggest boost to the Nasdaq index, were due on Thursday.
A positive earnings surprise is likely for Intel, according to Thomson Reuters Starmine.
The Dow, which ended on Monday above 11,000 for the first time since September 2008, maintained its perch just above that level.
Alcoa late on Monday reported earnings, excluding items, in line with expectations, but its revenue missed Wall Street's estimates, pushing the stock down 3.2 percent to $14.10. Alcoa is the first Dow component to report first-quarter results.
Sure, there's some disappointment
in Alcoa.... (but) I think there are higher expectations for the overall market, from Intel tonight and others, said Michael James, senior trader at regional investment bank Wedbush Morgan in Los Angeles.
The question is, are those positive expectations reflected in stock prices, he said.
The Dow Jones industrial average <.DJI> was up 0.68 point, or 0.01 percent, at 11,006.65. The Standard & Poor's 500 Index <.SPX> was down 1.84 points, or 0.15 percent, at 1,194.64. The Nasdaq Composite Index <.IXIC> was up 1.06 points, or 0.04 percent, at 2,458.93.
S&P 500 earnings are seen rising 37.1 percent in the first quarter from a year earlier, according to Thomson Reuters data. The S&P 500 stock index is up nearly 40 percent over the past year, causing some analysts to speculate stock gains from earnings could be minimal,
Some bank shares fell as UBS cut its rating on regional banks including KeyCorp , down 3.5 percent at $8.05. A regional bank index <.KRX> dipped 0.9 percent.
(Editing by Kenneth Barry)