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Why Australian Ethical, Bapcor, Western Areas, & Wattle Health shares stormed higher

In afternoon trade the S&P/ASX 200 index has pushed higher again and is on course to finish the week on a positive note. At the time of writing the index is up 0.35% to 6,741.5 points.

Four shares that are climbing more than most today are listed below. Here’s why they are ending the week on a high:

The Australian Ethical Investment Limited (ASX: AEF) share price is up 3% to $1.72. After the market closed on Thursday the investment manager upgraded its profit guidance for the full year. According to the release, the company expects underlying profit after tax to be between $6.4 million and $6.6 million. This will be a mid-point increase of 30% and compares favourably to its previous guidance of $5.7 million to $6.2 million.

The Bapcor Ltd (ASX: BAP) share price has climbed 3% to $6.00. The catalyst for this appears to be a broker note out of the Macquarie equities desk this morning. According to the note, the broker has an outperform rating and $6.85 price target on its shares. Macquarie believes that concerns over structural issues are unnecessary as they will not have a meaningful impact on its business for some time.

The Western Areas Ltd (ASX: WSA) share price has charged 3.5% higher to $2.01 after the nickel producer provided an update on its Odysseus project. Investors have responded very positively to Western Areas advising that the early capital works at the project have been completed as planned and on budget. The company also revealed that several key milestones have been achieved recently.

The Wattle Health Australia Ltd (ASX: WHA) share price is up 3.5% to 56.5 cents. Earlier this week the baby food and infant formula company announced that it has signed a revised debt facility term sheet for net cash funding of up to US$85 million with US-based Gramercy. These funds will be used to acquire independent, nutritional dairy processing and packaging business, Blend and Pack. Investors appear to believe that this is a step in the right direction for the company.

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James Mickleboro has no position in any of the stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool Australia's parent company Motley Fool Holdings Inc. owns shares of Australian Ethical Investment Ltd. The Motley Fool Australia owns shares of and has recommended Bapcor. 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.