Monday the 14th of January, will see several big companies announce their earnings for the Q4 2012. Here’s our run down of the top five earnings reports to watch.

earnings

Morgan Stanley (NYSE:MS): This is the big one on Monday. Morgan Stanley (NYSE:MS) is one of the most important banks in the United States, and the world. Analysts are looking for earnings of $0.58 per share from the investment bank. In the fourth quarter of 2011, the company released an earnings report that showed a loss of 14 cents per share.

Financial stocks will probably be among the most watched this earnings season. The sector performed reasonably well in 2012, but failed to show the gains that economists were hoping for. Morgan Stanley (NYSE:MS) will be the second major bank to report when it releases it earnings on Monday. Wells Fargo already announced its fourth quarter earnings on the morning of Friday 11th January.

Kinder Morgan Energy Partners L.P. (NYSE:KMP): Analysts are expecting the energy logistics firm to announce earnings of 64 cents per share. The company earned 51 cents per share in the same period last year. Kinder Morgan Energy Partners L.P. (NYSE:KMP) earned 57 cents per share in the third quarter of 2012.

The company is a key player in the pipeline business. The importance of that business has risen dramatically in recent years as fracking has hugely increased the amount of oil and gas production in North America. The firm’s stock suffered in 2012, but has begun to rally in anticipation of this earnings announcement. The company has been getting good press recently as a strong energy stock, Monday’s earnings will prove whether confidence in the company has been well founded or not.

Bankinter SA (MCE:BKT): Bankinter is one of the largest banks in Spain. The firm is not exactly at the forefront of investor’s minds, but its earnings will be used as an indicator of the performance of the banking system in one of Europe’s most affected economies. The firm is expected to announce earnings of 8 cents per share on Monday.

The firm’s earnings per share will not be the most valuable piece of information it announces. Analysts will be poring through the company’s deposit rates and capitalization ratios in order to get a measure of the strength of the Spanish banking system heading into a new year. Whether or not the information made public by Bankinter SA (MCE:BKT) will have implications on the way investors see Europe early in 2013.

I Grandi Viaggi SpA (BIT:IGV): This firm will also announce its earnings on Monday, and like Bankinter SA (MCE:BKT), will be an early indicator for the European economy. Grandi Viaggi SpA (BIT:IGV) is one of Italy’s largest tourism companies. Its results will be an indicator of that country’s 2013.

Tourism is a huge industry in Italy. With an election coming up, tourism numbers are not likely to cause any headline shock for the Mediterranean country, but they will be an indicator of the country’s future. If Italian tourism begins to trend downward, and it might based on the Greek experience, the economy will slow down even more than it already has. Europeans are worried about a decade long recession. The result of I Grandi Viaggi SpA (BIT:IGV) will provide a small glimpse into Italy.

Rocky Mountain Chocolate Factory Inc. (NASDAQ:RMCF): This was a great growth stock in 2012. Rocky Mountain Chocolate Factory Inc. (NASDAQ:RMCF) stock grew in value by almost 24% last year, and continued to grow in the early days of 2013. The company makes chocolates and candies.

Rocky Mountain Chocolate Factory Inc. (NASDAQ:RMCF) is expected to report earnings of 26 cents per share on Monday. In the same period last year the company earned 21 cent per share. Rocky Mountain Chocolate Factory is currently the subject of an unusual takeover deal. The PST Capital offer to purchase the company has been compromised by among other things, spelling errors, and factual errors.