LONDON -- The FTSE 100
But there are plenty of individual companies that aren't affected much by that and are soaring regardless. Here are three pushing their high points today.
Cruise operator Carnival has made a strong recovery since the Costa Concordia sinking, and today it hit a new 2012 high of 2,369 pence. That's not quite up to its 52-week high of 2,378 pence set late last year, but it is more than 30% up on the 18 pound level the shares were trading at around February and March.
Since looking at the shares back in June, I am surprised by the strength of the bounce, and though there is an earnings recovery forecast for the year to November 2013 (this year should be down a bit), it does put the shares on a forward price-to-earning ratio for that year of more than 15 with a dividend yield of only 3%. That looks a bit too expensive to me.
If you want to see a classic growth share, take a look at Telecity Group, the data center provider. Its shares have soared from 156 pence at the start of 2009, bouncing close to a record high of more than 900 pence. Today they're down a bit from that at 885 pence, but that's still more than a five-and-a-half-fold rise.
There are good earnings growth forecasts for the next two years, too, with 25% expected for both 2012 and 2013. But the company is still clearly on growth-share pricing with a forward P/E of nearly 30, and about the only confident thing we can say about such shares is that they keep going up until they come down again. The question is how high they'll go before that happens.
The transaction-processing provider PayPoint has been soaring, too, having more than tripled since early 2010 to reach a new peak of about 750 pence. It's been up and down around that point for a few days and is currently back a little at 744 pence.
Again we have strong forecasts, though more modest this time at 10% earnings growth per year for the next two years. The P/E of 17 is lower, and there's a dividend of a bit more than 4% expected, so could this be a good one for a growth punt? Maybe, but I prefer something less risky.
In fact, I generally prefer good dividend-paying shares, and I reckon the Motley Fool report "8 Shares Held By Britain's Super Investor," which takes a look at some of ace investor Neil Woodford's major holdings, is a great guide. Click here to get your free copy while it's still available.
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Alan does not own any shares mentioned in this article. The Motley Fool owns shares of PayPoint. 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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