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3 ASX stocks that beat the market yesterday

The S&P / ASX 200 Index (Index: ^AXJO) (ASX: XJO) rose 2% to close at 4,136.9 – the market’s best day in five months, as Greece’s pro-austerity parties claimed a victory in the weekend elections. These three stocks did much better, rising by more than 7%.

Paladin Energy Ltd (ASX: PDN) soared by 8.4% to close at $1.29, on news that Japan is to restart two nuclear reactors, and speculation that more reactors will be restarted in the near future. This is good news for uranium miners, such as Paladin, with uranium prices and demand expected to increase. Paladin’s shares had fallen by more than 50% since June 2011, before yesterday’s rise.

Fairfax Media Limited (ASX: FXJ)climbed  7.4% to 65 cents after announcing that it would cut 1,900 staff, as part of its plans to shift more of its business online and away from physical newspapers. The company plans to close two printing presses by June 2014, and will start charging for access to online content, in the hope of saving the company $235m over three years. Gina Rinehart also confirmed that she had upped her stake in Fairfax to 18.6%, as she continues to push for board representation. According to a report in the Australian Financial Review, Rinehart now wants three board seats.

Goodman Fielder Limited (ASX: GFF) jumped 7.3% to 58.5 cents, on no news at all. The company is in the midst of a turnaround, trying to sell off non-core businesses and focusing on growth in Asia. Supermarket discounting and a focus on selling more home brands have hammered Goodman Fielder’s results in past years. The company makes well-known Australian brands including Pampas, Meadow Lea, ETA, White Wings and breads including Mighty Soft and Wonder White.

Singapore’s Wilmar International Limited (SGX: F34), the world’s largest listed palm oil plantation firm, is Goodman Fielder’s largest shareholder, with 10.1% of the company. It’s unlikely that Wilmar will make a bid for the company — the stake is more likely to hinder competitors making a full takeover offer for Goodman.

Other risers include Mesoblast Limited (ASX: MSB) up 7.2% to $5.93 and Karoon Gas Australia Limited (ASX: KAR) up 6.6% to $4.38.

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Motley Fool contributor Mike King doesn’t own shares in any companies mentioned. The Motley Fool ‘s purpose is to help the world invest, better.  Take Stock  is The Motley Fool’s  free  investing newsletter. Packed with stock ideas and investing advice, it is essential reading for anyone looking to build and grow their wealth in the years ahead.  Click here now  to request  your free subscription , whilst it’s still available. This article contains general investment advice only (under AFSL 400691). Authorised by Bruce Jackson.

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