3 Shares the FTSE Should Beat Today

LONDON -- The FTSE 100 (INDEX: ^FTSE  ) is still hovering around the 5,900 level, down 12 points on the day to 5,904 as I write. It's been a good week for the index of top U.K. shares following positive economic news about inflation and unemployment, and the market is edging ever closer to its 52-week high of 5,989. It's sure to beat that soon, isn't it?

Though the market has been going strong, some individual shares in the various FTSE indexes are having a rough session. Here are three that are falling and look set to lag the index today.

Premier Oil (LSE: PMO.L  )
Premier Oil slipped 2.3% to 373 pence following the announcement of an exchange offer concerning the company's guaranteed convertible bonds. The offer is for existing bonds due in 2014 to be exchanged for new bonds due in 2018, with a conversion price of $7 and a coupon of 2.5%.

Premier Oil shares have been erratic this year and have lagged the FTSE.

Nighthawk (LSE: HAWK.L  )
Meanwhile, small-cap Nighthawk Energy suffered a bigger loss, falling 12% to 5.5 pence after releasing a drilling update. The drilling program at the group's Jolly Ranch field in Colorado is to be extended to five wells after one well failed to produce.

Other wells are showing optimistic signs, but overall the news has clearly disappointed the market, bringing to a halt an impressive rise the shares have enjoyed over the past couple of months.

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Bunzl (LSE: BNZL.L  )
In an entirely different sector, Bunzl took a 4.6% dip, falling 50 pence to 1,032 pence as the distribution and outsourcing specialist released an interim management statement. Things are generally going as expected, although underlying growth excluding acquisitions does seem to be under pressure.

Speaking of acquisitions, Bunzl also told us it has acquired the U.K. packaging firm Indigo Concept Packaging, taking the number of acquisitions in the year to date up to seven.

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


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