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The 3 strongest tech stocks on the ASX this week

These 3 technology stocks are the biggest movers and shakers in the sector on the S&P/ASX 200 this week.

WiseTech Global Ltd (ASX: WTC)

Shares in software and logistics company WiseTech Global Limited were up 3.5% at the time of writing to $9.95 after booking a good day of gains on April 10 also – rising 4.8% during the day’s trade to land at a $9.95 close.

Citigroup has upgraded WiseTech from sell to neutral this week on the basis its share price has rallied well ahead of intrinsic valuation.

Citi upgraded its share price target on the stock from $9.02 to $9.51 and the Citi analyst maintains WiseTech’s medium-term outlook is positive due to a robust industry sector and its upcoming investor day on May 4.

Things are certainly looking a little more positive for WiseTech shareholders and with some solid growth prospects in the pipeline all are hoping these gains are a sign WiseTech’s time on the declines is over.

Smartgroup Corporation Ltd  (ASX: SIQ)

Shares in salary packaging software company Smartgroup Corporation spent some time at the top of the gains list on April 10, with its share price driving up 4.2% during the day’s trade to land at a closing price of $10.88.

Smartgroup shares are down 2% today to $10.88 at the time of writing, about on par with Smartgroup’s salary packaging sister McMillan Shakespeare Limited (ASX: MMS), with McMillan shares down 0.6% to $16.11 today – although both companies show decent gains over the last 12-months.

Smartgroup announced a 46% increase in profits for its FY17 results back in February, with NPATA at $64.1 million as McMillan reported revenue growth of 4.4% for the half-year to December 31, 2017 and an UNPATA of $44.3 million – up 5.2%.

Smartgroup remains conservatively geared with a net debt of $111.1 million and is working to expand its salary packaging footprint within the PBI sector to drive growth.

Xero Limited (ASX: XRO)

Application software provider Xero Limited shares are up to $35.09 at the time of writing, with the company’s 12-month price graph showing a strong upward momentum from its $18.30 price at this time last year.

Xero continues to capture more and more market share from lucrative markets across Australia, New Zealand and the UK, with US ambitions likely to generate good investor sentiment in the near-term and hopefully some good profit growth soon too.

Xero relies on the excellent reputation of its products to drive momentum, and so far, it has worked well for the company – with Xero 194,000 new subscribers in 2017 in Australia alone, with 212,000 coming on board in the UK.

Another technology solutions player worth watching is Iress Ltd (ASX: IRE) whose shares were down 0.8% today at $9.59.

Iress shares have bottomed out over the last 12-months as the $1.6 billion market cap company struggled to excite investors with the release of its FY17 results in February which revealed revenue was flat in all operating segments bar Lending.

But recent news Iress will acquire data analytics provider Lucsan may help to give the company the boost it’s looking for – Lucsan provides financial advisers with compliance coverage with a solid product proposition and strong demand in its space.

The Lucsan acquisition comes after a year of Iress making minority investment in the business with the takeover expected to be completed this month.

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Motley Fool contributor Carin Pickworth has no position in any of the stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool Australia owns shares of WiseTech Global and Xero. The Motley Fool Australia has recommended IRESS Limited. 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 Scott Phillips.

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