Despite a subdued end to the week, the S&P/ASX 200 Index (ASX: XJO) managed to record another solid weekly gain. The benchmark index climbed 1.2% over the five days to end it at 6,176.8 points.
Unfortunately, not all shares on the index pushed higher with the market. Here’s why these were the worst performers on the ASX 200 last week:
Flight Centre Travel Group Ltd (ASX: FLT)
The Flight Centre share price was the worst performer on the index last week with a 9.1% decline. This appears to have been driven by a broker note out of Credit Suisse. According to the note, the broker has downgraded the travel agency’s shares to a neutral rating with a $15.31 price target. It made the move after pushing back its travel bookings recovery forecast by six months to reflect a recent surge in COVID-19 cases in the northern hemisphere.
Mesoblast limited (ASX: MSB)
The Mesoblast share price was out of form and dropped 7.7% lower over the five days. That was despite there being no news out of the biotech company. However, it is worth noting that short interest has been building. Short sellers have been targeting the company after the US FDA didn’t approve its remestemcel-L application for steroid-refractory acute graft versus host disease (SR-aGVHD). At the last count, 8.9% of its shares were held short.
Webjet Limited (ASX: WEB)
The Webjet share price was a poor performer and dropped 7.2% last week. I suspect that this was driven by a combination of increasing COVID-19 cases in New South Wales and Victoria and a surge in cases in Europe and North America. This, as Credit Suisse suggested above, appears to have pushed back the tourism recovery.
Zip Co Ltd (ASX: Z1P)
The Zip Co share price wasn’t far behind with a 7.1% decline over the period. This was despite the buy now pay later provider releasing a strong first quarter update. Big increases in customer numbers and transaction growth led to Zip reporting record quarterly transaction volume of $943.1 million. This was up 96% on the prior corresponding period. It also led to the company reporting an 88% increase in quarterly revenue to a record of $71.7 million. Judging by the share price decline, some investors may have been expecting even stronger growth.
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Returns as of 6th October 2020
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 ZIPCOLTD FPO. The Motley Fool Australia owns shares of and has recommended Webjet Ltd. The Motley Fool Australia has recommended Flight Centre Travel Group 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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