Falls from GlaxoSmithKline and AstraZenenca after broker downgrades helped push the FTSE 100 (FTSEINDICES: ^FTSE) down 66 points (1%) to 6,521 during early afternoon trading, while rising retail figures raised fears of economic stimulus measures being eased sooner than expected.
But which shares are not suffering today? Here are three from the FTSE indices that are on the up and look set to beat the market today:
Imperial Tobacco shares piled up 73p (3.4%) to 2,227p this morning, after a third-quarter update told us that the group’s “nine month performance confirms our full year expectations“. The company is refocusing on cutting costs and boosting higher-profit brands, as actual tobacco volumes are falling — underlying stick-equivalent volumes fell 5%, though revenue only dipped 1%.
Current forecasts suggest a modest 4% rise in earnings per share (EPS), and today’s update suggests that is realistic. With the share price having declined by around 10% over the past year, a raised dividend looks set to yield 5.4%. The shares are on a forward P/E of just over 10.
News of a deal with Virgin Media for the provision of BT Sports channels gave BT Group (LSE: BT-A) (NYSE: BT.US) a modest 2.7p (0.8%) boost to 329p. The wholesale deal, agreed prior to the upcoming start of new Barclays Premier League season, will see Virgin customers getting direct access to BT Sport 1 and 2.
BT’s chief executive, Marc Watson, said BT had “made a large investment in BT Sport and this is an important commercial agreement for us that recognises the excellence of the channels“.
BT shares are now up more than 50% over the past 12 months, though they have been marginally higher, and shareholders have enjoyed a four-bagger since the firm’s low point of 2009.
Real estate investment trust Derwent London (LSE: DLN) released first-half figures today, and it’s share price perked up 30p (1.3%) to 2,375p as a result. With underlying rental values up 2.6%, pre-tax profit gained 5.7% to £28m and EPS was up 3.6% to 25.95p.
The firm proposed an interim dividend of 10.75p per share, up 8%. Assets are looking good, too, with net assets per share up 8.9% to 2,054p.
Chief executive Robert Rayne said: “Though there are now signs of more general improvement, London’s ever-evolving economy continues to outperform that of the rest of the UK“.
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> Alan does not own any shares mentioned in this article.