NEW YORK ( TheStreet) -- The recent deal signed by BP ( BP) with Russia's Rosneft was seen as a signal that it was finally back to business as usual for the British oil giant, and that the six-month distraction of the oil spill had finally cleared, but it might be next week's earnings report from the oil company that delivers the more important news to investors in the form of a reinstated dividend. News related to the BP dividend, suspended since the oil spill, and on its ongoing liabilities from the oil spill, will not surprisingly be marquee items in next week's BP earnings. BP shares are up 5% year-to-date, and have near doubled since the oil spill low share price of $26. The rise in BP shares has been sharp enough that Collins Stewart this week downgraded BP shares to a hold, citing valuation. Big oil companies have been reporting strong fourth quarter numbers, buoyed by the price of oil. Most major oil companies are now trading at or near 52-week highs, and energy stock bullishness experienced a huge day on Wednesday. While the ultra-bull view at the end of 2010 that $100 crude was just the starting point for a major move up in the new year has turned out to be at least a little hasty -- crude had six straight losing sessions in a row before Wednesday's big day -- even if crude stays between a range of $80 and $100 it's a comfort zone for the energy stocks. Critics of the most optimistic crude forecast worry that an ever-higher price in oil would actually clamp down on the economic recovery anyway. If ever-rising crude might not propel oil companies to ever-higher 52-week share prices in the near-term, and improvements in the refining business are already embedded in shares, for BP in particular, a little more pop in shares could depend on the level of a dividend reinstatement and no surprises regarding the Gulf of Mexico liability when earnings are released on Tuesday, at 2 a.m. ET. BP already provided one surprise this week, when a group of Russian oligarchs filed a court injunction to stop the just-signed deal between BP and Rosneft.