Why the Appen Ltd share price has rocketed 20% higher today

The Appen Ltd (ASX: APX) share price has been one of the biggest movers on the local share market this morning.

At the time of writing the data solutions and services provider’s shares are up a massive 20% to $3.10.

What happened?

After the market closed yesterday the company released a positive announcement which revealed an upgrade to its full-year earnings guidance.

The increasing demand for its high quality data for machine learning-based product development has led management to expect full-year earnings before interest, tax, depreciation, and amortisation (EBITDA) growth of between 40% and 50% on last year’s result.

Previous guidance given in its full-year result in February was for mid to high teen EBITDA growth in FY 2017.

Should you invest?

As I said yesterday, I think Appen is a great buy and hold investment option in the information technology sector.

With natural language processing, machine learning, and artificial intelligence increasingly being used to automate business processes and personal tasks, I believe demand for Appen’s services is likely to remain strong for the foreseeable future.

So with its shares changing hands at around 29x trailing earnings, I think Appen is great value for money given its current growth profile.

As a result, I would put it up there with Nextdc Ltd (ASX: NXT) and WiseTech Global Ltd (ASX: WTC) as one of the best shares to own in the tech sector.

Finally, as well as Appen, NEXTDC, and Wisetech Global, I think these exciting growth shares could be great investments today.

Top 3 ASX Blue Chips To Buy In 2017

For many, blue chip stocks means stability, profitability and regular dividends, often fully franked..

But knowing which blue chips to buy, and when, can be fraught with danger.

The Motley Fool's in-house analyst team has poured over thousands of hours worth of proprietary research to bring you the names of "The Motley Fool's Top 3 Blue Chip Stocks for 2017."

Each one pays a fully franked dividend. Each one has not only grown its profits, but has also grown its dividend. One increased it by a whopping 33%, while another trades on a grossed up (fully franked) dividend yield of almost 7%.

If you're expecting to see the likes of Commonwealth Bank, Telstra and Wesfarmers shares on this list, you'll be sorely disappointed. Not only are their dividends growing at a snail's pace, their profits are under pressure too due to the increasing competitive environment.

The contrast to these "new breed" blue chips couldn't be greater... especially the very real prospect of significant share price gains, something that's looking less likely from the usual blue chip suspects.

The names of these Top 3 ASX Blue Chips are included in this specially prepared free report. But you will have to hurry. Depending on demand - and how quickly the share prices of these companies moves - we may be forced to remove this report.

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Motley Fool contributor James Mickleboro has no position in any stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool Australia owns shares of Appen Ltd and WiseTech Global. 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.

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