Investor sentiment has been positive over the last few months and this has seen quite a number of shares make new 52-week highs.
While the big end of town has propelled the S&P/ASX 200 (Index: ^AXJO) (ASX:XJO) to its own multi-year highs, a number of smaller shares have also performed quite strongly over the past few months.
Three top-performing shares that have grabbed my attention include:
Steadfast Group Ltd (ASX: SDF)
Steadfast Group operates the biggest general insurance broking network and underwriting agency group in Australia and New Zealand. The company has been able to deliver very strong earnings growth over the past couple of years, despite facing subdued insurance premium pricing over that time. Pleasingly, the company recently noted that market conditions appear to be improving and this has helped to propel the shares 23% higher for the year-to-date. The shares are currently trading on a forward price-to-earnings ratio of 30, which means investors might want to leave it on their watchlist for now.
Big Un Ltd (ASX: BIG)
Big Un is one of the more unique companies on the ASX and is involved in providing small to medium businesses with video technology products and services. As described by the company itself – “They are a video version of Tripadvisor and produce online destination guide TV shows”. Although the $80 million company is still not profitable, its latest update did reveal some impressive growth numbers including a 532% increase in year-on-year content views. The Big Un share price has climbed 264% over the past year, although the shares are still a little too speculative for my liking.
Mesoblast limited (ASX: MSB)
The Mesoblast share price has been on fire over the past six months thanks to a number of positive announcements relating to FDA approvals, clinical trial results and a successful institutional capital raising. The good news is a welcome change for long-suffering shareholders who have been grappling with the stem cell company’s lack of commercial progress for the best part of five years. Amazingly, the shares have climbed 186% over the past six months, which just goes to prove that Mesoblast is not a share for the faint hearted.
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Based on the last 12-months of dividends, its shares are currently offering a fully-franked 4.8% yield, which grosses up to almost 7% when those franking credits are included. And in stark contrast to the likes of Commonwealth Bank and Telstra, this company just increased its dividend by over 13%, and guided for 2017 profits to grow by 20%!
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Motley Fool contributor Christopher Georges has no position in any stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool Australia has no position in any of the stocks mentioned. We Fools may not all hold the same opinions, but we all believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy. This article contains general investment advice only (under AFSL 400691). Authorised by Bruce Jackson.