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Why the SEEK share price sank 5% lower today

One of the worst performers on the ASX 200 on Thursday was the SEEK Limited (ASX: SEK) share price.

The job listings company’s shares were down as much as 5.5% at one stage before finishing the day just under 5% lower at $17.38.

Why did the SEEK share price tumble lower today?

With no news out of the company, today’s decline is likely to be attributable to a broker note out of Citi on Wednesday.

According to the note, the broker has retained its sell rating and cut the price target on SEEK’s shares down to $16.50 after looking into its Australian job advert numbers for the month of November.

Citi estimates that the company’s Australian job adverts fell 1% last month.

This would be the first time that this has happened in four years and has the broker concerned that it could be the start of a cyclical downturn. The broker suspects that falling house prices are to blame for this.

Should you buy the dip?

While I think that Citi makes a great point with SEEK, I still think that it is one of the best buy and hold options on the local share market. Especially given its growing international footprint.

However, it is worth noting that the company is investing heavily for future growth at the moment. This is likely to lead to slower than normal earnings growth for the company, potentially limiting the upside for its shares in the short term.

In light of this, investors may want to consider online listings peers such as Carsales.Com Ltd (ASX: CAR) or REA Group Limited (ASX: REA) instead.

My pick of the three would have to be REA Group right now. I’ve been very impressed at the way the company has been able to profit greatly in a cooling housing market.

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Motley Fool contributor James Mickleboro owns shares of SEEK Limited. The Motley Fool Australia has recommended carsales.com Limited, REA Group Limited, and SEEK Limited. 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 Scott Phillips.

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