These were the best performing ASX 200 shares in May

It certainly was a good month for shareholders of these ASX 200 shares…

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Surge in ASX share price represented by happy woman pointing to her big smile

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The S&P/ASX 200 Index (ASX: XJO) was on form in May and charged notably higher. The benchmark index rose for the eighth consecutive month, recording a 1.9% gain over the period to end at 7,162.6 points.

While a good number of shares climbed higher with the index, some posted stronger gains than others. Here’s why these were the best performing ASX 200 shares in May:

Resolute Mining Limited (ASX: RSG)

The Resolute share price was the best performer on the ASX 200 in May with a 25.8% gain. This gain appears to have been driven largely by bargain hunters looking for undervalued options in the gold sector. After all, even after this strong gain, the Resolute share price down 23% year to date. Its shares were sold off earlier this year due to weak production and disappointing guidance. In addition to this, a solid rise in the gold price gave its shares a lift. Fellow gold miners Evolution Mining Ltd (ASX: EVN), Gold Road Resources Ltd (ASX: GOR), and Perseus Mining Limited (ASX: PRU) recorded gains of at least 17% in May thanks to the rising gold price.

Whitehaven Coal Ltd (ASX: WHC)

The Whitehaven Coal share price wasn’t far behind with a monthly gain of 23.4%. This gain appears to have been driven by the release of a couple of bullish broker notes during the month. Both Macquarie and Credit Suisse upgraded its shares to an outperform rating on valuation grounds. Macquarie has a $1.70 price target and Credit Suisse has a $1.55 price target.

ALS Ltd (ASX: ALQ)

The ALS share price was a strong performer and recorded a 17.5% gain. The catalyst for this was the release of the global testing, inspection, and certification company’s full year results. ALS reported a 5% decline in revenue to $1,761.4 million and a 1.5% reduction in underlying net profit after tax to $185.9 million. This was a significant improvement on its first half performance.

Treasury Wine Estates Ltd (ASX: TWE)

The Treasury Wine share price was on form and charged 16% higher in May. Investors were buying the wine company’s shares following the release of an investor update. According to the release, the company is expecting its earnings before interest, tax, and SGARA (EBITS) to be in the range of $495 million to $515 million in FY 2021. This was ahead of the market consensus estimate for EBITS. This went down well with analysts at Morgans. In response, the broker upgraded Treasury Wine’s shares to an add rating with a $13.00 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 and has recommended Treasury Wine Estates Limited. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy. This article contains general investment advice only (under AFSL 400691). Authorised by Bruce Jackson.

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