LONDON -- After yesterday's fall back under the 6,300 level, the FTSE 100 (FTSEINDICES: ^FTSE ) has so far today regained 38 points to 6,285. There's really no economic news, so the rise just seems like a rebound from yesterday's sell-off. Such things are just meaningless noise to long-term Fools, who are looking at horizons of five years and beyond.
Individual shares are always helping to push up the various FTSE indexes. Here are three that are rising as a result of news today.
Virgin (LSE: VMED ) (NASDAQ: VMED )
Virgin Media skyrocketed 16% to 2,858 pence after the company released a comment relating to recent press speculation about a possible deal with cable telecom company Liberty Global. Virgin has confirmed that it is in talks with Liberty Global concerning "a possible transaction" but has as yet revealed no details of the nature of the transaction.
The leap takes Virgin shares up more than 80% over the past 12 months. Current expectations for the year to December 2012 put the shares on a forward price-to-earnings ratio of 15, with that falling to under 10 for this year.
ARM (LSE: ARM )
How long can the shares of ARM Holdings keep rising? Well, it's not over yet, as the chip designer has seen its share price boosted by another 3.9% today following the release of full-year results. In sterling, full-year revenue rose by 17% to 577 million pounds, with normalized pre-tax profit up 10% to 277 million pounds. Earnings per share came in 18% ahead at 14.7 pence. Over the year, 2.5 billion chips based on ARM designs were shipped.
Chief executive Warren East, in a classic example of understatement, said "ARM has seen good revenue and earnings growth throughout 2012." That EPS figure puts the shares on a P/E of 63 -- overvalued, or still cheap? That's for you to decide.
BP (LSE: BP )
Shares in BP have put on a modest 1.4% to 468.5 pence despite the oil giant's full-year profits falling by 19%. Profit for the year, on a replacement-cost basis, fell from $21.7 billion to $17.6 billion. There will be a quarterly dividend of $0.09 per share. These results do include a further $5 billion in costs related to the Deepwater Horizon disaster, taking the total cost so far to $42 billion. But it is looking like the company can finally move on from that now.
So, with these figures, how are BP shares looking? Well, we're looking at a P/E of only eight with a dividend yield of about 5%, and that makes BP look cheap to me -- which is why I added it to the Fool's Beginners' Portfolio.
Income from dividends like BP's is a core part of many a long-term portfolio. Whether you take the income to live on or reinvest it in more shares, there's nothing wrong with good old cash, whatever your strategy. And that's why I recommend the brand-new Fool report "The Motley Fool's Top Income Share For 2013," in which our top analysts identify a share they believe will provide handsome dividend income for years to come. But it will only be available for a limited period, so click here to get your copy today.