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These were the best performing ASX 200 shares last week

A happy woman pointing to her big smile, indicating a surge in share price
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Although it had a soft finish to the week, the S&P/ASX 200 Index (ASX: XJO) continued its positive run and recorded another solid weekly gain. The benchmark index rose 1% over the five days to 6,601.1 points.

While a good number of shares climbed higher, some recorded stronger than average gains. Here’s why these ASX 200 shares were on fire last week:

Platinum Asset Management Ltd (ASX: PTM)

The Platinum share price was the best performer on the ASX 200 last week with a gain of 14.8%. This was despite there being no news out of the fund manager. However, on the Friday before, Platinum held its annual general meeting and spoke positively about the future. Management said: “It is encouraging to note that Platinum’s early positioning in COVID recovery cyclical stocks has begun to be rewarded in recent weeks as equity markets start to digest the future implications of a vaccine led economic recovery in more cyclical stocks.”

Whitehaven Coal Ltd (ASX: WHC)

The Whitehaven share price wasn’t far behind with a gain of 14% last week. This may be down to optimism that Chinese steel makers will begin buying Australian coal again next year. A recent note out of Goldman Sachs reveals that its analysts believe Chinese steel makers will begin buying Australian coal again in January/February. It notes that the China steel industry still requires high quality Australian met coals for blending in 2021. Last week it was also revealed that China was paying over the odds for coal from North America.

Pendal Group Ltd (ASX: PDL)

The Pendal share price was a strong performer and jumped 13.5% over the five days. Last week this fund manager announced that it would be taking the unconventional step of investing into Bitcoin. The head of bond, income, and defensive strategies, Vimal Gor, is becoming increasingly bullish on cryptocurrencies and Bitcoin in particular.

Mesoblast limited (ASX: MSB)

The Mesoblast share price continued its positive run and jumped 11.8% higher last week. This stretched its monthly gain to a sizeable 31.3%. Investors have been fighting to get hold of the biotechnology company’s shares since it announced a potentially lucrative deal with global pharmaceutical giant Novartis. The deal could see Mesoblast earn upwards of US$1.25 billion from milestone payments.

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Returns as of 6th October 2020

Motley Fool contributor James Mickleboro has no position in any of the stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool Australia has no position in any of the stocks mentioned. 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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