Why these top shares more than doubled in value in 2017

Thanks to a strong run since October, the All Ordinaries (Index: ^AXAO) (ASX: XAO) is on course to deliver a return of 8% in 2017.

While this is undoubtedly a strong return, it is nothing compared to some of the returns that shares on the index have made this year.

Here’s why these three shares have more than doubled in value this year:

The Appen Ltd (ASX: APX) share price has climbed a remarkable 181% since the turn of the year. An impressively strong half-year result and guidance upgrade was a key catalyst for this gain, as was the acquisition of Leapforce in November. Appen paid $80 million for the specialist in search relevance with a highly automated, proprietary end-to-end technology platform. Management expects the deal to be at least 35% accretive to underlying earnings per share.

The Pilbara Minerals Ltd (ASX: PLS) share price has jumped 124% since the start of the year. The signing of a major offtake agreement with Great Wall Motors and the growing demand for lithium has largely been the driver behind this impressive gain. I think its shares are about fair value now and would class them as a hold.

The Updater Inc (ASX: UPD) share price has rocketed 211% this year. Investors appear to have been impressed with the market penetration achieved by the US-based relocation technology company. At the last count, approximately 16.6% of all U.S. relocations were handled by its platform. This is a level in which management believes it can monetise the platform and plans to launch a series of revenue generating services.

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Top 3 ASX Blue Chips To Buy In 2018

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

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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%.

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