Why Imperial Tobacco Group PLC, Shire PLC and Royal Dutch Shell Plc Should Beat The FTSE 100 Today

Imperial Tobacco Group PLC (LON: MT), Shire PLC (LON:SHP) and Royal Dutch Shell Plc (LON:RDSB) all made gains this morning.

| More on:

The content of this article was relevant at the time of publishing. Circumstances change continuously and caution should therefore be exercised when relying upon any content contained within this article.

When investing, your capital is at risk. The value of your investments can go down as well as up and you may get back less than you put in.

Read More

The content of this article is provided for information purposes only and is not intended to be, nor does it constitute, any form of personal advice. Investments in a currency other than sterling are exposed to currency exchange risk. Currency exchange rates are constantly changing, which may affect the value of the investment in sterling terms. You could lose money in sterling even if the stock price rises in the currency of origin. Stocks listed on overseas exchanges may be subject to additional dealing and exchange rate charges, and may have other tax implications, and may not provide the same, or any, regulatory protection as in the UK.

You’re reading a free article with opinions that may differ from The Motley Fool’s Premium Investing Services. Become a Motley Fool member today to get instant access to our top analyst recommendations, in-depth research, investing resources, and more. Learn More.

The FTSE 100 (FTSEINDICES: ^FTSE) fell 0.7% to 6,672 points today after a number of companies gave disappointing outlooks. Before today, the index had risen for six straight sessions, but the year’s longest winning streak is over, with Rolls Royce and Tate & Lyle leading the market down.

The top faller was Tate & Lyle, which lost 15%, while Rolls Royce fell by 12%. Even Lloyds, after its return to profitability, fell nearly 4%. A number of leading FTSE 100 members like HSBC, Centrica and Direct Line will be reporting final results in the coming weeks.

The outlook wasn’t all bad, and these are the shares that should beat the market today:

Imperial Tobacco

imtThe world’s fourth largest cigarette company reported today that it expects modest earnings growth in 2014, despite falling demand for tobacco. The shares of Imperial Tobacco (LSE: IMT) are up 5% to 2,338p as the group maintains momentum in growth markets in the Middle East and Asia, while it anticipates “at least a 10% increase” in its dividend for the full year.

The company, which makes the Lambert & Butler and Davidoff brands, also thinks it’s spotted an opportunity in electronic cigarettes, and will attempt to catch up to rival British American Tobacco by introducing its first two e-cigarette products later this year. The traditional cigarette business is under pressure as the number of smokers dwindles below 20% in the UK.


shireThe pharmaceutical group Shire (LSE: SHP) reported strong quarterly results today, adding 49p to 3,190p. Since taking over last April the new chief executive, Flemming Ornskov, has overseen a 50% rise in the group’s share price. In 2013 earnings grew by 23% and the group expects growth to continue at this rate.

Revenues rose in 2013 by 12% to £2.9bn and the dividend was increased by 15% to 11p. In 2014 growth should benefit from the recent $4.2bn acquisition of rare disease company ViroPharma. Also part of the growth strategy is the simplifying of operations and cost cutting.


royal dutch shellShell’s (LSE: RDSB) (NYSE: RDS.B.US) recent profit warning didn’t really hit the company hard. The setbacks, such as rising exploration costs and weak refining conditions, were already known to the wider market. As such its shares didn’t drop by much, underlining its position as a steady rock in the stock market.

The shares were up around 1% to 2,282 during early trading this morning, after news that the company was poised to announce the sale of three assets in the North Sea. Stepping up asset disposals is part of a new strategy and the company hopes to divest £9bn as a result.

Should you invest, the value of your investment may rise or fall and your capital is at risk. Before investing, your individual circumstances should be assessed. Consider taking independent financial advice.

> Mark does not own shares in any company mentioned. The Motley Fool has recommended Shire.

More on Investing Articles

Businessman use electronic pen writing rising colorful graph from 2023 to 2024 year of business planning and stock investment growth concept.
Investing Articles

Buying 8,617 Legal & General shares would give me a stunning income of £1,840 a year

Legal & General shares offer one of the highest dividend yields on the entire FTSE 100. Harvey Jones wants to…

Read more »

Man writing 'now' having crossed out 'later', 'tomorrow' and 'next week'
Investing Articles

£25k to invest? Here’s how I’d try to turn that into a second income of £12,578 a year!

If Harvey Jones had a lump sum to invest today he'd go flat out buying top FTSE 100 second income…

Read more »

Union Jack flag in a castle shaped sandcastle on a beautiful beach in brilliant sunshine
Investing Articles

2 lesser-known dividend stocks to consider this summer

Summer is here and global markets could be heading for a period of subdued trading. But our writer thinks there…

Read more »

pensive bearded business man sitting on chair looking out of the window
Investing Articles

Here’s how I’d aim to build a £50K SIPP into a £250K retirement fund

Our writer outlines the approach he would take to try and increase the value of his SIPP multiple times in…

Read more »

Investing Articles

9.4%+ yields! 3 proven FTSE 100 dividend payers I’d buy for my Stocks and Shares ISA

Our writer highlights a trio of FTSE 100 shares with yields close to 10%. He'd happily pop them into his…

Read more »

Mixed-race female couple enjoying themselves on a walk
Investing Articles

Are Raspberry Pi shares a once-in-a-lifetime chance to get rich?

With Raspberry Pi shares surging after a successful IPO, could this UK tech startup offer a long-term wealth creation opportunity…

Read more »

Newspaper and direction sign with investment options
Investing Articles

Huge gains and 9% yields: why now’s an amazing time to be a stock market investor

The stock market’s generating fantastic returns in 2024. Whether you're looking for gains or income, it’s a great time to…

Read more »

Hand of person putting wood cube block with word VALUE on wooden table
Investing Articles

This steady dividend payer looks like one of the best bargain stocks in the FTSE 100

A yield of 4.7% and a consistent dividend record make this FTSE 100 company look like good value in an…

Read more »