3 FTSE Shares Hitting New Highs

LONDON -- The FTSE 100 (FTSEINDICES: ^FTSE  ) is falling back from its recent rise, dropping 26 points to 5,896 as of 10:30 a.m. EST to lower it further from its 52-week high of 5,989 points. After the index reached a nine-month high last week before falling back a little on Friday, some will be disappointed. But Fools shouldn't care too much about such daily swings and should instead concentrate on solid, long-term investments.

Speaking of which, some of the U.K.'s best-known companies have been reaching for the sky in recent months. Here are three trading close to their 52-week peaks.

BT (LSE: BT-A  )
BT Group shares have been having a good time recently, powering up to a 52-week high of 242 pence, and today they're just a shade short of that at 236 pence. That's a rise of more than a quarter over the past 12 months.

Forecasts for this year and next are strong, with a rise in earnings per share rise of more than a third predicted by City analysts, and there's a dividend yield of about 4% on the cards. Despite the rise, the shares are only on a forward price-to-earnings ratio of 9.6.

Lloyds (LSE: LLOY  )
Shares in bailed-out Lloyds Banking Group have had a year that few were expecting, doubling to reach a 52-week high of 47 pence. Although Lloyds, along with Royal Bank of Scotland, suffered massive losses during the crisis, both are expected to turn a profit this year, and both have enjoyed share price recoveries -- RBS is up more than 50%.

Lloyds is, in fact, predicted to turn in a profit of 1.5 billion pounds, rising to 2.6 billion pounds for 2013. That 2013 figure puts the shares on a forward P/E of around 12, so if you think we're in for a few years of rising profits, Lloyds may seem an attractive investment.

Home Retail (LSE: HOME  )
After halting the slump at Argos and starting a promising turnaround, Home Retail has seen its shares respond well, and at 127 pence they're trading very close to their 52-week high of 131 pence.

With the transition of Argos to a multichannel retailer starting off well, forecasts suggest earnings will bottom out in the current year to March, and there's a return to growth penciled in for the following year.

Daily gains from shares can all play their part in making you your first million. But the real secret to becoming rich from shares is simple long-term investing in fundamentally sound companies and letting steady growth and dividends power your wealth upward. If you don't think making a million is feasible, read The Motley Fool's report "10 Steps To Making A Million In The Market" and see if you change your mind. The report won't cost you a penny, so click here to have a copy delivered to your inbox while it's still available.


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