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Ansell shares jump to new record high as ASX 200 soars

The Ansell Limited (ASX: ANN) share price has jumped higher today to hit a new 52-week high of $29.92 per share.

Why are Ansell shares climbing higher?

The only announcement from Ansell this morning was about changes to its board composition.

Mr. Nigel Garrard will join the Ansell board as an independent non-executive Director from 1 March 2020. Mr. Garrard will fill the vacancy left by Mrs. Marissa Peterson after her retirement at the 2020 Annual General Meeting.

The announcement and the broader push from the S&P/ASX 200 Index (INDEXASX: XJO) this morning has boosted the Ansell share price to a new record high.

The ASX 200 has climbed 0.18% higher after opening at a new all-time high of 6,893.70 points.

Ansell shares are up 7.29% in the last month and an impressive 36.60% since the start of the year.

The current $29.88 valuation is a new record high for Ansell shares after approaching the mark back in April this year.

The company’s half-year and full-year results didn’t shoot the lights out, but still impressed shareholders enough this year.

Ansell reported strong sales growth in its half-year and full-year results despite moderating profitability.

The Ansell share price jumped higher in August following an upgrade in its earnings per share (EPS) growth forecast.

The group’s full-year net profit fell 19.5% to $111.7 million, despite sales climbing 0.6% higher. It wasn’t the strongest financial result for the healthcare group as the US–China trade war and Brexit presented significant challenges. 

Adjusted earnings before interest and tax (EBIT) climbed 5% to $202.8 million but the real kicker was the upgraded EPS forecast of $1.12 to $1.22 in FY20.

These numbers would represent mid-single digit growth for this financial year and the Ansell share price climbed higher.

Is Ansell the best ASX healthcare company?

The ASX 200 Healthcare sector has been a real outperformer in 2019.

The Ansell share price isn’t the only one to be hitting record highs this week with CSL Limited (ASX: CSL) and Cochlear Limited (ASX: COH) also part of the club.

The sector’s strong outperformance in 2019 comes in a bumper year for Aussie equities as investors have come along for the ride.

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Kenneth Hall has no position in any of the stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool Australia's parent company Motley Fool Holdings Inc. owns shares of Cochlear Ltd. and CSL Ltd. The Motley Fool Australia has recommended Ansell Ltd. and Cochlear 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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