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Auckland Airport Lower After Queensland Deal

Fuseworks Media
Fuseworks Media

Wellington, Jan 11 NZPA - Shares in Auckland Airport fell when the New Zealand sharemarket opened for the week, after the company announced a deal to buy stakes in Cairns and Mackay airports in Queensland.

Auckland Airport's share price was down 5c, or 2.4 percent, to 203 shortly after the market opened, following the announcement it had agreed to buy from Westpac Bank a 24.55 percent stake in North Queensland Airports for $A132.8 million (about $NZ166m).

The wider market was also lower, with the benchmark NZSX-50 index down 6.55 points to 3303.68 around 10.15am, falling from its 15-month closing high of 3310.2 on Friday when the index gained 25.4 points.

Other shares falling early today included Fisher & Paykel Healthcare, down 3c to 336, Tourism Holdings down 3c to 90, and Telecom easing 1c to 258.

Among the early risers were NZX, up 4c to 230, NZ Refining Co 4c to 369, and F&P Appliances 2c to 64.

Fletcher Building continued its general upward trend since mid-December, lifting 3c to an 11-week high of 835, while Contact Energy shares were unchanged on 632.

In the United States, stocks rose on Friday (local time) after trading in the red most of the day as investors concluded weak December jobs data would not interrupt a trend of steady economic recovery.

The S&P 500 and the Dow hit new 15-month highs while the Nasdaq climbed to its highest level in 16 months. Friday closed a strong week for US stocks with the S&P 500 climbing all five sessions.

The economy unexpectedly shed 85,000 jobs in December, the Labor Department reported, but analysts said this was not inconsistent with a slowly recovering economy as the pace of monthly jobs losses have declined sharply since the height of the recession.

In addition, November's payrolls report was revised to a gain in jobs, bolstering that view.

The Dow Jones industrial average rose 0.1 percent to 10,618.19, the Standard & Poor's 500 Index climbed 0.3 percent to 1144.98, and the Nasdaq Composite Index added 0.7 percent to 2317.17.


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