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3 Shares Set to Beat the FTSE Today

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LONDON -- The FTSE 100 (UKX) is hovering at 5,819 points as I write, just 10 points up on the day, and it looks like it's going to be a pretty flat week. Still, if we're not seeing any upward movement, the absence of fresh eurozone shocks is welcome.

But even if the FTSE isn't moving, individual companies in the various indices are. Here are three that are doing very well today...

Hargreaves Lansdown
An interim update sent Hargreaves Lansdown (LSE: HL.L  ) shares up 27.5 pence (4%) to 715.5 pence.

In the three months to 30 September, assets under management were boosted by 2.2 billion pounds to 28.5 billion pounds. Revenues rose to 68.7 million pounds, 20% up on the same quarter last year, and a company record for any quarter.

The firm told us of a "pleasing start" to the year, and an "excellent" start to October. Year-end price-to-earnings (P/E) ratio is around 24, but there's a 3.8% dividend forecast.

News that Interserve (LSE: IRV.L  ) is to release 89.5 million pounds from the disposal of some investments gave the shares an 11.4 pence (3.1%) boost to 382 pence today. Interests in two subsidiaries were sold, providing an extra incentive for investors looking for shares that are likely to pay good dividends.

For the year to December, the City is expecting a 5.4% dividend yield from Interserve, and that should be more than twice covered by earnings. And with a forward P/E of only 8, we could have a bargain here.

If you like strong dividends like Interserve's, ace investor Neil Woodford, who specializes in that strategy, might have something for you. The Motley Fool report "8 Shares Held by Britain's Super Investor" takes a look at some of his major holdings. Click here to get your free copy while it's still available.

Talking of flying shares, budget airline Flybe (LSE: FLYB.L  ) took off today, up 5.7% to 53 pence. The driver was the news of a contract with Finnair to fly 12 of its jets on its behalf, under Finnair colors but operated by Flybe Finland.

We also got a trading update, which told us that things are going in line with expectations. With Flybe shares being pretty depressed right now, down more than 20% on the year, shareholders could do with a boost; will this provide the long-term turnaround that's needed? We can only wait and see.

With a number of sectors starting to look like they're on the way up again, now could be a good time to start planning on making your first million from investing in shares. It really is plausible, and this free Motley Fool report tells you how.

Further Motley Fool investment opportunities:

Alan does not own any shares mentioned in this article. The Motley Fool owns shares in Hargreaves Lansdown. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy. We Fools may not all hold the same opinions, but we all believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors. Try any of our Foolish newsletter services free for 30 days.

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