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Why Flight Centre Travel Group Ltd (ASX:FLT) is among 3 shares at 52-week highs

It’s been a mixed week for the S&P/ASX 200, with commodity stocks, companies from the travel sector and some big-names like Blackmores Limited (ASX: BKL) hitting the skids.

But the S&P/ASX 200 is up 6.7 points at the time of writing at 6204.3 and these three companies are having a good run – hitting 52-week highs.

Flight Centre Travel Group Ltd (ASX: FLT)

Travel agency stalwart Flight Centre shares are at a 52-week high at the time of writing – up 0.9% to $65.41.

But are there storms on the horizon for this travel industry leader?

Flight Centre shares have rocketed up 66% from its share price of $39.39 at this time last year, with a particularly good 2018 so far.

But can the company maintain its foothold with the likes of Webjet Limited (ASX: WEB) in the wings?

UBS this week retained its buy rating on the stock, with a price target increase to $69.

But while Flight Centre is flying high for now, I think it would be prudent to take some profit pretty soon – given that the company relies so heavily on strong discretionary spending from customers – which means it fares pretty badly in an economic downturn.

One to watch if you’re holding.

Orora Ltd (ASX: ORA)

Shares in $4.3 billion market cap packaging company Orora Ltd are in the red today, down 0.8% to $3.57, but hit a 52-week high on June 26 when its share price closed at $3.60.

There has been little news out of Orora of late, but an Australasian update in May reaffirmed its focus on innovation to drive growth and unlock shareholder value.

SBWire this week reported Orora, alongside packaging peer Amcor Limited (ASX: AMC), is poised to make the most out of forecasts the global packaging industry is about to grow at a rapid pace.

SBWire reported packaging companies who kept pace with technological changes were the best placed to capitalise on the sector growth and Orora’s recent upgrade in digital printing machinery and South Australia warehouse investment would certainly fit this mould.

One to watch as the sector expands.

Wesfarmers Ltd (ASX: WES)

Shares in supermarket and department store group Wesfarmers Ltd were up a further 0.4% to $49.81 at the time of writing as the stock sits pretty at a 52-week high.

Wesfarmers appears to have gotten its priorities straight of late if its recent strategy day is anything to go by, with growth plans highlighted for Wesfarmers’ existing operations and the implied possibility that the company could shrink itself to return value to shareholders in the medium-term.

Investors have responded well to word Wesfarmers has no new acquisition interests on the horizon, as shareholders recover from the disappointment of its failed UK home improvement experiment.

Wesfarmers looks set to deliver strong long-term performance and a stable dividend stream that investors seek in blue-chip stocks, while the more speculative players in the space include Metcash Limited (ASX: MTS).

Metcash this week reported its full year results with a $125 million off-market buy back sweetener impressing investors.

Many investors consider Wesfarmers as the number 1 stock to hold until retirement.

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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 and has recommended Blackmores Limited, Flight Centre Travel Group Limited, and Wesfarmers Limited. The Motley Fool Australia has recommended Webjet 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 Scott Phillips.

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