3 FTSE Shares Hitting New Highs

LONDON -- The FTSE 100 (FTSEINDICES: ^FTSE  ) has slumped today, dropping 102 points, or 1.6%, to 6,293 as of 8:50 a.m. EST after closing yesterday on a new high of 6,395 points. The latest eurozone economic data is unexpectedly poor, wiping out earlier positive sentiment. Rather than the hoped-for return to growth this quarter, the signs suggest a contraction of 0.3%.

But even if the eurozone is looking weak, there are still plenty of individual FTSE companies whose share prices are flying. We look at three setting new records.

ARM (LSE: ARM  ) (NASDAQ: ARMH  )
ARM Holdings shares closed yesterday on yet another new 52-week record of 951.5 pence, though they have dropped back to 909 pence today.

Shares in the chip designer have been on a steady rise since third-quarter results were released in October, putting on more than 60% in the subsequent four months. We've since had full-year results on Feb. 5 showing a 17% rise in revenue to 577 million pounds, with pre-tax profit up 20% to 276.5 million pounds and earnings per share up 18% to 14.7 pence.

Centrica (LSE: CNA  )
Utility company shares are generally thought of as income investments that pay steady dividends. But Centrica, the owner of British Gas, has provided nearly 20% share price growth over the past 12 months too, with the price closing on a 52-week high of 354 pence yesterday.

The company paid a dividend yielding more than 5% in 2011, and there's a yield of 4.7% for the year to December 2012 currently being predicted by analysts -- results are due next week.

TalkTalk (LSE: TALK  )
Telecom operator TalkTalk's shares have soared by more than 80% over the past year, reaching a new closing high of 261 pence yesterday, slightly down from an intraday high of 266 pence. And there's been strong fundamental performance behind the rise, with a 33% rise in EPS for the year to March 2012 and a dividend yield of 6.6%.

For the current year we have a small drop in EPS forecast, but there should still be a dividend of about 4% paid, with both earnings and dividends predicted to rise over the following two years. Results to March 31 are due on May 16.

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