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Why these 4 ASX shares have been CRUSHED today

Global markets are in sell-off mode today and the benchmark S&P/ASX 200 (Index: ^AXJO) (ASX: XJO) has not been able to escape. In early afternoon trade the index is down 1.2% to 5,716 points.

Four shares which have fallen more than most today are listed below. Here’s why they have sunk like stones:

The James Hardie Industries plc (ASX: JHX) share price has tumbled 4.5% to $20.57 after the building product manufacturer released its full-year result. Despite net profit rising 13% to US$276.5 million and management providing a positive outlook, it wasn’t enough to prevent its shares being caught up in today’s sell-off.

The Sirtex Medical Limited (ASX: SRX) share price has dropped a massive 28% to $10.75 after the company’s FOXFIRE trial disappointed. According to the release, the trial did not show an improvement in overall survival times for patients. Today’s decline means that its share price has now fallen 61% in the last six months.

The Vita Group Limited (ASX: VTG) share price has continued to slide lower, this time by 5% to 85.7 cents. The retailer’s shares have now fallen around 75% year-to-date as investors become increasingly bearish on the former market darling following further changes to its agreement with Telstra Corporation Ltd (ASX: TLS). This is one retailer to avoid in my opinion.

The Westpac Banking Corp (ASX: WBC) share price has fallen 3.5% to $31.04. Whilst the big four banks have all tumbled lower today, Westpac has fallen the most due to its shares going ex-dividend. At one stage its shares hit a six-month low of $30.64. At the current share price I think Westpac is starting to look attractive, but I would hold off an investment until the full consequences of the proposed bank levy are known.

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The Motley Fool Australia owns shares of Telstra Limited. 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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