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Why these 5 ASX shares have sunk like stones today

Although it started strongly, a surprise increase in Australian unemployment was enough to send the S&P/ASX 200 (Index: ^AXJO) (ASX: XJO) lower in afternoon trade. At present the index is 0.1% lower to 5,767 points.

Four shares which have acted as a drag on the market are listed below:

The Ainsworth Game Technology Limited (ASX: AGI) share price has fallen 4% to $1.82 today despite there being no news out of the gaming machine developer. Today’s decline means its shares have fallen almost 14% year-to-date. A reasonably disappointing 4.3% drop in half-year profit in February appears to be the reason behind the sell-off.

The Eclipx Group Ltd (ASX: ECX) share price has dropped 4% to $3.86 today. Once again there was no news out of the company to explain today’s move. But with its shares up 36% in the last 12 months and changing hands at 20x trailing earnings, I wouldn’t be surprised if there was a touch of profit taking going on today.

The Estia Health Ltd (ASX: EHE) share price has tumbled 3.5% to $2.99. Although Estia Health delivered a strong first-half result, I’m reasonably sceptical that the company will deliver on its full-year guidance. For this reason I would suggest investors lock in their year-to-date return of around 15%. Rival aged care operator Regis Healthcare Ltd (ASX: REG) has also fallen by a similar amount today.

The Myer Holdings Ltd (ASX: MYR) share price is down 4.5% to $1.09 following the release of a mixed first-half result. Although half-year sales were down a touch following a weak second quarter, half-year profit rose 5.3% to $62.8 million. One bright spot was the performance of its online segment. Online sales rose 48% during the half.

Finally, if your portfolio took a hit today don't worry. Adding in one of these fast-growing shares could be just what it needs to start climbing higher again.

Top 3 ASX Blue Chips To Buy In 2017

For many, blue chip stocks means stability, profitability and regular dividends, often full franked..

But knowing which blue chips to buy, and when, can often be fraught with danger.

The Motley Fool's in-house analyst team has poured over thousands of hours worth of proprietary research to bring you the names of "The Motley Fool's Top 3 Blue Chip Stocks for 2017."

Each one pays a fully franked dividend. Each one has not only grown its profits, but has also grown its dividend. One increased it by a whopping 33%, while another trades on a grossed up (fully franked) dividend yield of almost 7%.

If you're expecting to see the likes of Commonwealth Bank, Telstra and Wesfarmers shares on this list, you'll be sorely disappointed. Not only are their dividends growing at a snail's pace, their profits are under pressure too due to the increasing competitive environment.

The contrast to these "new breed" blue chips couldn't be greater... especially the very real prospect of significant share price gains, something that's looking less likely from the usual blue chip suspects.

The names of these Top 3 ASX Blue Chips are included in this specially prepared free report. But you will have to hurry. Depending on demand - and how quickly the share prices of these companies moves - we may be forced to remove this report.

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Motley Fool contributor James Mickleboro has no position in any 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 Bruce Jackson.

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