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New Zealand sharemarket rises strongly on strong data

Fuseworks Media
Fuseworks Media

Wellington, Sept 1 NZPA - The New Zealand sharemarket rose strongly today as news of vigour in the Australian economy outweighed the fallout from the collapse of South Canterbury Finance yesterday.

The benchmark NZX-50 index closed up 40.998 points, or 1.35 percent, to 3077.1.

Stronger than expected Australian growth data and Chinese manufacturing data boosted both the Australian sharemarket and Australian dollar and future prices also indicated strength in the US sharemarket.

China's official purchasing managers' index rose to 51.7 in August from a 17-month low of 51.2 in July, while Australia's economy grew a stronger-than-expected 1.2 percent in the second quarter.

"There seems to have been a bit of a positive shift in sentiment this week, with today's data confirming local resilience," Ben Potter at IG Markets said.

Fonterra's internet milkpowder auction tomorrow morning is also being closely watched by local investors as an up-to-date indicator of commodity prices for this economy.

Among the leaders, Fletcher Building rose 9c to 761, Telecom eased a cent to 205 and Contact Energy eased 4c to 561. Air NZ eased 2c to 126.

Pike River Coal rose 5c to 105, while SkyCity rose 8c to 295.

Tower rose 5c to 190 and NZOG rose 3c to 118. Goodman Fielder rose 4c to 173.

Auckland Airport rose 2c to 202, while The Warehouse rose 6c to 360. Briscoe Group rose 6c to 199.

AMP Office Trust rose 1c to 73, while Kiwi Income Property Trust rose 1c to 97.

Port of Tauranga rose 3c to 678 and Mainfreight rose 6c to 671.

Allied Farmers fell to 2.5c. NZ Experience rose 2c to 37.

In the United States, stocks ended little changed in choppy trading on the last day of the month.

Positive data surprises sustained a rally for most of the session, but declines in technology shares capped overall gains.

US consumer confidence rose more than expected in August and home prices ticked up in June, though a separate report showed business activity in the US Midwest grew in August a bit less than economists expected.

The Dow Jones industrial average edged up 0.1 percent to 10,014.72, the Standard & Poor's 500 ticked up 0.04 percent to 1049.33, and the Nasdaq Composite slipped 0.3 percent to close at 2114.03.

For the month, the Dow fell 4.3 percent while the Nasdaq tumbled 6.2 percent. The S&P 500 lost 4.8 percent, posting its worst August since 2001 in terms of percentage declines.

Further weighing on the market, minutes of the Federal Reserve's latest policy meeting suggested the outlook for the US economy would have to deteriorate "appreciably" to spur fresh support from the central bank.

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