April certainly was a great month for the S&P/ASX 200 Index (ASX: XJO). The benchmark index rebounded strongly and recorded a gain of 8.8%. This was its best month in over three decades.
While the majority of shares on the index pushed higher, some climbed more than most. Here’s why these ASX 200 shares were the best performers in April:
The AP Eagers Ltd (ASX: APE) share price was the best performer on the ASX 200 last month with a 69.6% gain. This strong gain appears to have been driven by bargain hunters swooping in after a sizeable decline in the prior month. Even after factoring in this massive monthly gain, the auto retailer’s shares are still down 65% from their 52-week high. Last month AP Eagers revealed that it was trying to cut costs materially to preserve cash and optimise liquidity. This includes negotiating rent reductions from its landlords.
The Afterpay Ltd (ASX: APT) share price wasn’t far behind with a 66% gain last month. Investors were buying the payments company’s shares after the release of an impressive business update. During the third quarter of FY 2020, the buy now pay later provider’s strong form continued with further customer and sales growth. At the end of March, Afterpay’s underlying sales reached $7.3 billion year to date. This was a 105% increase on the prior corresponding period. But perhaps the best news was that its losses and income margin remained stable during the quarter despite the coronavirus pandemic.
The oOh!Media Ltd (ASX: OML) share price was back on form and jumped 61% last month. Investors were buying the media and outdoor advertising company’s shares amid speculation that rival HT&E Ltd (ASX: HT1) could be planning a takeover approach. This speculation was supported by an announcement that revealed that HT&E has snapped up 11 million shares in oOh!Media. HT&E now holds a 4.2% equity interest in the company and advised that it “looks forward to supporting oOh!media as a constructive significant shareholder.”
The Scentre Group (ASX: SCG) share price rebounded last month and was up 49% over the period. This gain appears to have been driven by bargain hunting and optimism that retailers may open sooner rather than later. The shopping centre operator was also the subject of a positive broker note out of Morgan Stanley early in the month. It upgraded its shares to an overweight rating with a $2.20 price target.
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Motley Fool contributor James Mickleboro has no position in any of the stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool Australia owns shares of AFTERPAY T FPO. The Motley Fool Australia has recommended oOh!Media Ltd and Scentre Group. 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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