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4 stocks smashed as the ASX sinks

The S&P/ASX 300 (Index: ^XKO) (ASX: XKO) crumbled today, losing 0.9% to close at 5,179.6 points, as miners, financial stocks and industrials all fell heavily. By sector, materials and metals & mining lost nearly 2%, while the best performing sector was the property trusts or A-REITs.

These four stocks saw their share prices tumble much more than the index…

Billabong International Limited (ASX: BBG) saw its share price crash 22.9% to $0.54 after the surfwear retailer reported that a number of headwinds had impacted on earnings by $2.5 million in the first four months, compared to the prior year. We covered the story in more detail here.

Intueri Education Group Ltd’s (ASX: IQE) share price sunk 13.1% to $0.69, after New Zealand’s largest private training institution reported that a review of funding for two of its schools would reduce this financial year’s earnings by between $4 and $5 million. Education providers in both Australia and NZ appear to on the receiving end of government clamp downs on funding, which could spread to more companies.

Mesoblast limited (ASX: MSB) saw its share price drop 8.1% to $1.58, continuing a shocking week for the stem cell researcher. Shares have more than halved in the past five days, following a lacklustre US listing which was heavily discounted to the last closing price of $3.41 before the US IPO. US-listed shares have also plummeted – so much for US investors and analysts understanding biotech stocks better than in Australia, as Mesoblast CEO Silviu Itescu recently claimed.

Select Harvests Limited’s (ASX: SHV) share price fell 7.2% to $9.61, despite no news from the company. Investors may well be taking some cash off the table after the share price gained more than 50% in the past year. Select Harvests is profiting while California – the world’s largest almond-growing region – is facing a crippling drought. The company could also benefit from increasing demand for Asian demand for almond products such as almond milk – a popular alternative for people who are lactose intolerant.

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Motley Fool writer/analyst Mike King doesn't own shares in any companies mentioned. You can follow Mike on Twitter @TMFKinga

Unless otherwise noted, the author does not have a position in any stocks mentioned by the author in the comments below. 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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