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Why these 4 ASX shares dropped lower today

In afternoon trade the S&P/ASX 200 (Index: ^AXJO) (ASX: XJO) has pushed notably higher again and is up 0.3% to 6,148 points.

Four shares that have been unable to follow the market higher today are listed below. Here’s why they have dropped lower:

The Creso Pharma Ltd (ASX: CPH) share price has tumbled almost 8% to $1.11 despite there being no news out of the pot stock. But considering the strong gains that the industry has made in recent days, I suspect profit-taking has started. I can’t help but feel that there’s a good chance that other pot stocks will follow suit.

The Northern Star Resources Ltd (ASX: NST) share price is down 2.5% to $6.00. Today’s decline is likely to be related to a slight decline in the gold price overnight after the U.S. dollar strengthened. The spot gold price is currently fetching US$1,318 an ounce. As I expect the U.S. dollar to strengthen as U.S. rates rise, I believe the gold price could continue to weaken as the year progresses.

The PAS Group Ltd (ASX: PGR) share price is 2.5% lower to 40 cents after the retail group released a trading update. According to the release, management advised that subdued consumer sentiment, industry wide traffic headwinds, and an elevated promotional environment have continued to way on its performance. As a result, like-for-like sales from its Review and Black Pepper brands are lower year-on-year.

The Sigma Healthcare Ltd (ASX: SIG) share price has continued its decline, falling 4.5% to 94 cents. Although there was no news out of the company, investors have been heading to the exits for some time due to the pharmacy chain operator and distributor’s deteriorating performance. I think investors ought to stay away from Sigma despite how cheap it may look.

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Motley Fool contributor James Mickleboro has no position in any of the 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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