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This is why BHP Billiton Limited’s share price is falling today

Although the S&P/ASX 200 (Index: ^AXJO) (ASX: XJO) has managed a 1.2% gain, some investors will be disappointed to learn that BHP Billiton Limited (ASX: BHP) has once again failed to find any support for its share price.

Some investors would point out that both iron ore and oil fell in price overnight and suggest that is the reason why BHP’s shares fell another 0.5% today (and as much as 1.3% earlier).

While that could be weighing on the market’s sentiment, it’s also worth noting that Rio Tinto Limited (ASX: RIO), a prominent iron ore producer, is up 0.6%, while Woodside Petroleum Limited (ASX: WPL), one of Australia’s biggest energy producers, is up 2%. So that seems unlikely to be the reason.

Instead, the weakness in BHP’s share price could stem from an announcement by the miner this morning that BlackRock Inc., the world’s largest asset manager, had ceased to be a substantial shareholder of the miner. Until recently, it was the company’s biggest shareholder.

Obviously, the aim of investing is to buy shares when they’re at their weakest and offload them close to their peak (without trying to time the market). While many investors have become convinced that the resources sector may have finally found its floor after falling so heavily in recent years, they may want to take this as a sign that even the world’s biggest investors aren’t falling for that one.

Although BHP Billiton is hovering around its lowest price since 2008, the situation could certainly get worse from here. Even at $22.74, I believe there are far greater buys than BHP Billiton right now, and BlackRock may have just saved itself from some further pain.

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Motley Fool contributor Ryan Newman has no position in any stocks mentioned. Unless otherwise noted, the author does not have a position in any stocks mentioned by the author in the comments below. You can follow Ryan on Twitter @ASXvalueinvest.

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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