LONDON -- The FTSE 100 (FTSEINDICES:^FTSE) is back on the rise again, climbing 0.61% by 9:10 a.m. EST to hit 6,170 -- yet another 52-week record. The U.K.'s main index has closed above 6,100 for 12 consecutive days now and looks set to make today No. 13. Markets generally seem buoyed today by strengthening growth figures from China and increasingly upbeat sentiment toward its economy.
While the overall market is making fresh gains, so are many constituents of the indexes. Here are three releasing strong trading updates today.
Spectris has put on 6.3% to reach 2,151 pence after the instrumentation and controls firm released its year-end trading update, taking the price up nearly 40% over the past 12 months. Although the firm's trading environment was said to be challenging, a strong fourth-quarter helped push sales for the full year up 11%, with the like-for-like figure up 3%.
Like-for-like sales in the Asia-Pacific region rose by 6%, with Chinese demand strong as that country's economic growth is starting to strengthen again.
Shares in Genel Energy are up 3.1% to 804 pence on a trading update ahead of full-year results. Average production for the year came in at 44,500 barrels of oil per day, up 6% on 2011's production and in line with previous guidance.
Chief executive Tony Hayward told us of a "strong production performance and a materially expanded exploration portfolio," and he expects new opportunities in the Kurdistan region of Iraq and in Africa during 2013.
Kentz Corporation shares got a 5.9% boost to 412 pence after the engineering and construction group gave us a full-year pre-close update. Earnings per share should be in line with the current analyst consensus, suggesting growth of close to 25%. The firm's prospect pipeline has also strengthened, up 32% over the same stage last year to $13.2 billion, and Kentz recorded a year-end net cash position of $220 million.
The current price puts the shares on a modest forward price-to-earnings ratio of 10, with forecasts for 2013 dropping it to less than nine. The full-year dividend should be around 2.2%.
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