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Here’s why these 4 ASX shares smashed the market today

Today was another buoyant day for the S&P/ASX 200 (INDEXASX: ^AXJO)(ASX: XJO) index, which rose another 1% to 5,319 points, taking its total gain for the past five days to 4.2%.

A number of shares particularly outperformed:

Australian Dairy Farms Group (ASX: AHF) soared 36% to $0.45 after the group announced a major acquisition that will create Australia’s first listed, vertically integrated dairy company. The acquisition is expected to more than double the company’s anticipated Earnings Before Interest, Tax, Depreciation and Amortisation (EBITDA) in the 2017 financial year.

Lifehealthcare Group Ltd (ASX: LHC) shares rose 9.7% to $3.29 on no news, perhaps echoing the optimism felt by the broader ASX in recent days. In an article written before the market opened, I opined that Lifehealthcare could be a solid small-cap addition to portfolios at prices of around $3, although it looks like investors will have to be patient if they want to buy in at that price.

Select Harvests Limited (ASX: SHV) gained 4% to $8.48 as investors seek opportunity in the almond grower, whose share price is down 25% in the past six months. Select Harvest is currently working to secure its supply chain by constructing a biomass boiler and steam turbine power plant which will help power the company’s processing facilities in Victoria.

AP Eagers Ltd (ASX: APE) continued its strong performance today, rising another 4.5% to be up 103.5% in the past 12 months. It’s been a great result for shareholders, and driven by performance; net profit before tax was up 29.5% to $59.5m, while the dividend also rose 33% to 12 cents per share as of the six months to 30 June 2015.

A subsequent acquisition announced in November is expected to lift net profit before tax by a further $18 million per annum – it’s no coincidence shares gained 20% since November as well.

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Motley Fool contributor Sean O'Neill owns shares of LifeHealthcare Group Limited. 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.