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Modest Early Gain For NZ Sharemarket

Fuseworks Media
Fuseworks Media

Wellington, March 3 NZPA - Dual-listed banks were well out in front of the pack when the New Zealand sharemarket opened with modest gains today.

ANZ was up 50c or 1.6 percent to 3100, while Westpac gained 42c or 1.2 percent to 3472.

Steel & Tube lifted 6c or 2.4 percent early, but only on small volume, while Ebos Group was up 4c to 630, Sky City gained 2c to 321, and Rakon added 2c to 104.

Among leading shares, Telecom was unchanged early at 219, Contact Energy slipped 1c to 618, with Fletcher Building also easing 1c, to 796.

Around 10.15am the benchmark NZX-50 index was up 4.2 points to 3187.44, after yesterday posting its fifth straight gain with a 19.1-point lift.

Children's clothing company Pumpkin Patch gained a further 3c to 212, having lifted 9c yesterday after reporting interim profit up 50 percent. Lyttelton Port fell 5c to 240, while Windflow Technology gained 8c to 133.

In the United States stocks ended slightly higher as mergers and acquisitions supported some sectors, while investors pared gains in big-cap technology and bank shares late in the session.

The Dow Jones industrial average edged up 0.02 percent to 10,405.98, according to preliminary figures. The Standard & Poor's 500 Index added 0.2 percent to 1118.31, and the Nasdaq Composite Index rose 0.3 percent to 2280.79.

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