Why Informa PLC, Quindell Portfolio PLC and Balfour Beatty plc Should Beat The FTSE 100 Today

The FTSE 100 (FTSEINDICES: ^FTSE) has continued last week’s recovery by adding 11 points more this morning to reach 6,633. Engineering firms were amongst the biggest risers, with BA Systems, Rolls-Royce Holdings and Smiths Group all among the day’s biggest early winners.

Which companies are responding well to their own individual news today? We’ll have to look outside the top index to find much, but here are three:


Publishing and conference firm Informa (LSE: INF) released a third-quarter update today, and saw its shares pick up 17.5p (3.2%) to 560p by midday to take the price up 40% over the past 12 months.

Chief executive Peter Rigby said “It has been a solid quarter for the Group with good performances in each division ensuring positive organic growth across the first nine months of the year“, with the company recording 1.1% organic revenue growth during the nine months.

Full-year expectations are unchanged, with the City forecasting flat earnings growth and a dividend of around 3.6%.

Quindell Portfolio

Quindell Portfolio (LSE: QPP) shares have recovered well since their slump in April, and picked up 0.44p (2.7%) this morning to take them to 16.7p and up more than 15% on the year.

Today’s boost came from a third-quarter update, which told us of gross sales of £98.1m after first-half sales had come in at £167.3m. Adjusted earnings per share reached 0.65p, against the 1.1p per share the firm earned in the first half.

Executive chairman Rob Terry told us this was the firm’s “tenth successive quarter meeting or exceeding market expectations in all key performance indicators“.

Balfour Beatty

Balfour Beatty (LSE: BBY) started 2013 off on a bit of a downer, but its shares have been recovering since the summer and added a modest 2.2p (1%) this morning to reach 283.4p.

 The firm followed up last Monday’s contract announcement with news of another one today, after landing a Crossrail Electrification job. Worth £64m, the deal will see Balfour Beatty working for Network Rail to electrify a 12.5 mile section of the Great Western Main Line.

The work is due to start in December and should be completed by late 2016.

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