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Fletcher Building leads the way down on NZ market

Fuseworks Media
Fuseworks Media

Wellington, April 27 NZPA - The New Zealand sharemarket closed lower today as the only major positive piece of corporate news came from unlisted dairy co-operative Fonterra.

Following a small gain yesterday, the benchmark NZX-50 index finished down 14.34 points, or 0.4 percent, at 3291.91.

"Fonterra increasing its payout rate didn't seem to inspire," said Stephen Wright of ASB Securities, noting that New Zealand followed lacklustre markets offshore.

Fonterra upped its milk price forecast for the current season by 40c to $6.10, the second-highest payout to its farmer shareholders on record, on the back of rising global demand.

However, blue chip building supplies and construction company Fletcher Building led the way on the market with a 10c decline to 835.

Top stock Telecom was down a cent at 219, Contact Energy fell 2c to 622, Infratil lost a cent to 174, and Sky City fell 3c to 319.

Other stocks to decline included seafood exporter Sanford, down 6c at 435, Trustpower, off 5c at 745, and outdoor clothing retailer Kathmandu, down 10c at 239.

On the rise, Ebos was up 7c at 652, Cavalier gained 3c to 285, Tower rose a cent to 202 and Pike River Coal gained a cent to 115.

Across the Tasman, Australia's S&P/ASX 200 Index was little changed -- down 0.01 percent -- at 4881.1, while Japan's Nikkei share average was up 0.3 percent.

Earlier in the United States, stocks edged lower as bank shares fell on fears that proposed financial reforms would curb profits, while Caterpillar's strong results buoyed the Dow.

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