The S&P/ASX 200 index ended its winning streak by recording its first monthly decline of 2019 in August.
The benchmark index lost 208.4 point or 3.1% to finish the month at 6604.2 points after trade tensions and recession fears panicked investors.
Whilst that was disappointing, it couldn’t stop some shares on the index from charging higher. The four shares listed below were the best performers on the ASX 200 index in August. Here’s why:
The Nanosonics Ltd (ASX: NAN) share price was the best performer on the ASX 200 last month with an impressive 22.4% gain. All of this gain was made in the final week of the month when investors responded positively to the infection control specialist’s record full year results. In FY 2019 Nanosonics reported a 39% increase in sales to $84.3 million and a whopping 201% jump in operating profit before tax to $16.8 million. The good news is that management appears confident that there will be more market share gains and strong sales growth in FY 2020. In addition to this, a new product launch is expected next year, pending regulatory approval.
The Smartgroup Corporation Ltd (ASX: SIQ) share price wasn’t far behind with a 19.6% gain in August following a positive response to its half year results release. In the first half of FY 2019 the salary packaging and fleet management company posted a 5% lift in NPATA to $40.5 million and declared a fully franked interim dividend of 21.5 cents per share. Whilst this wasn’t an overly impressive result, it was comfortably ahead of the market’s expectations.
The Lendlease Group (ASX: LLC) share price was a strong performer last month, recording a gain of 17.1%. The international property and infrastructure group’s shares raced higher following the release of a better than expected full year result. In FY 2019 Lendlease reported a 41% decline in full year net profit after tax to $467 million, whereas the market had expected a profit of $425 million. I suspect investors are confident that the company is over the worst of its issues now.
The Afterpay Touch Group Ltd (ASX: APT) share price continued its impressive run and charged a further 16.7% higher in August. This has stretched the payments company’s year to date return to a massive 150%. In FY 2019 Afterpay Touch reported a 140% lift in underlying sales to $5.2 billion, an 86% increase in total income to $264.1 million, and a 93% jump in a net transaction margin to $136.5 million. This was ahead of even the market’s most bullish expectations. Two further positives were the company’s impressive start to life in the UK market and the signing of a strategic partnership agreement with payments giant VISA.
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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 Nanosonics Limited. The Motley Fool Australia owns shares of AFTERPAY T FPO. The Motley Fool Australia has recommended Nanosonics 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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