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Why Quindell Portfolio PLC, Clarkson PLC and AMEC plc Should Lag The FTSE 100 Today

The FTSE 100 (FTSEINDICES: ^FTSE) slid further this morning, dropping 22 points to 6,478 by early afternoon, as the markets fear a scaling back of stimulus measures by the US Federal Reserve. It has to come sooner or later, so it’s something that long-term investors will have already factored into their buying and selling decisions, but it does perhaps seem surprising that it has this much short-term effect.

But which individual shares are looking a bit depressed today? Here are three from the FTSE indices that have slipped:

Quindell Portfolio

Quindell Portfolio shares were down 1p (7%) by midday to 12.4p, even though they were initially up in early morning trading after the software and services firm released first-half figures that looked pretty strong. With revenue up 78% to £163.3m Quindell, which serves the insurance and telecommunications sectors amongst others, extracted a 17% gain in earnings per share (EPS) to 1.1p and said it expects to announce its maiden dividend by year-end.

Executive chairman Rob Terry said “Significant multiple contract wins have been achieved across the Group, with particularly strong growth in legal services and technology sales“.

Clarkson

It was first-half time for Clarkson (LSE: CKN) as well today, with the shipping services group reporting what it called a “Robust performance delivered in challenging markets“. Revenue strengthened slightly from £88m to £89.1m, while pre-exceptional pre-tax profit remained flat at £10.8m. Underlying EPS picked up a little, from 39.2p to 48.1p, and the firm lifted its interim dividend by 1p to 19p per share,

As a result, the share price has fallen 27p (1.4%) to 1,898p by the time I write these words, but it is still up more than 40% over the past 12 months.

AMEC

Engineering support services firm AMEC saw its share price slip 15p (1.4%) in morning trading to 1,069p, though by early afternoon it has recovered a little to 1,079p. The cause was the revelation that a bid for Kentz Corporation has been rebuffed by the Kentz board, who considered it to significantly undervalue the company. There is no news as yet concerning any possible further bid activity from AMEC.

Over the past 12 months AMEC shares haven’t done so well, dropping around 4%. And that comes despite five years of rising earnings with two more years of forecast gains, and with a predicted dividend yield of 3.7%.

Finally, you can compensate for the day-to-day ups and downs of share prices by looking for reliable dividends. So how would you like a company that’s offering a 5% yield and which could be set for some nice share-price appreciation, too?

All you need to do is get a copy of our BRAND-NEW report, “The Motley Fool’s Top Income Share For 2013” — it’s completely free of charge, but it will only be available for a limited period. Click here to enjoy your copy today.

> Alan does not own any shares mentioned in this article.