The S&P/ASX 200 (INDEXASX: XJO) finished the week up 1.8% on Monday’s opening level. This was against a backdrop of continuing trade tensions with our largest trade partner, April figures showing a 17.9% drop in April sales, and Wesfarmers Ltd (ASX: WES) announcing mass closures of Target stores nationally, and the big 3 iron ore miners rising approximately 4% under trade threats.
The ASX is clearly in a bizarre place. Like most of the world we take our lead from the US stock exchanges; which are being driven largely by the large tech shares.
These are some of the bigger news stories in ASX 200 trading last week that went almost totally under the radar.
5 ASX 200 Winners
The Alliance Aviation Services Ltd (ASX: AQZ) share price had a truly phenomenal week, rising 27.96% over the week. On Wednesday the company retracted its suspension of guidance due to Covid-19. It announced it was on target for a profit before tax of over $40 million. The company has been buoyed by its fly-in-fly-out services to resource companies and record charter flights. Alliance was floated as a takeover target for Qantas Airways Limited (ASX: QAN) last year.
Takeovers in general have been sparse since the start of the pandemic. The Village Roadshow Ltd (ASX: VRL) share price leapt a further 16.9% last week on the back of news about a conditional buyout offer by BGH Capital. The offer still represents a premium of 12.5% to Friday’s closing price.
Criticism of the opportunistic and predatory nature of the offer by US investor and 5% stakeholder Mittleman Brothers raised the spectre of a second offer for the embattled entertainer.
The Worley Ltd (ASX: WOR) share price was another ASX 200 winner this week. It jumped by 12.42% over last week. The rising WTI oil price combined with the announcement of two global framework agreements with BP International raised the likelihood of strong near term performance.
The A-REIT sector was among the ASX 200 winners last week across the board. The Stockland Corporation Ltd (ASX: SGP) share price rose 11.64% over the week. A very confident Stockland CEO Mark Steinert was interviewed by the ABC on Wednesday. He discussed rising trends in foot traffic and the progress around difficulties with Premier Investments Limited (ASX: PMV). Steinert also spoke positively about the residential real estate market.
Likewise the Scentre Group (ASX: SCG) share price rose by 10.89%. Scentre announced the successful raising of AUD$2.3 billion from the US bond markets on May 20.
4 share price falls
As well as the ASX 200 winners, last week also saw a few share price falls. However, the magnitude of share price slides has been lower than what we have come to expect.
The Austal Limited (ASX: ASB) share price fell by 9.74% over the week. Investors are still reeling from the company’s loss of a competitive tender worth US$5.5 billion to Italy’s Fincantieri (FCT.MI).
Transmission utility Ausnet Services Ltd (ASX: AST) saw its share price drop by 6.84% over the week. The company had recently announced it was looking into equity raising as one of its options to fund growth. The market is treating the share is if this process has commenced.
Regis Resources Limited (ASX: RRL) saw its share price fall by 5.5% despite a wave of good news over the past month.
CSL Limited (ASX: CSL) also saw its share price fall by 5.49% last week. Likely as a result of investors taking profits off the table.
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Daryl Mather owns shares of Austal Limited. The Motley Fool Australia's parent company Motley Fool Holdings Inc. owns shares of Austal Limited and CSL Ltd. The Motley Fool Australia has recommended 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.