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NZ Share Market Tumbles After Plunge In US

Fuseworks Media
Fuseworks Media

Wellington, March 6 NZPA - After two sessions with solid gains, the New Zealand share market tumbled today following steep drops in United States equities.

US stocks extended their slide to 12-year lows as General Motors' warning of possible bankruptcy and concerns about the fate of the banking system sped investors' flight from riskier assets.

As usual the movement in the New Zealand market was in the same direction but not as extreme.

The benchmark NZSX-50 index closed down 20.361 points, or 0.817 percent, at 2471.040, following gains of 22 points and 51 points in the previous two days.

Turnover was $70.48 million. There were 23 rises and 63 falls among the 122 stocks traded.

Rakon rose 12c to 97 and when queried by NZX had no material events to disclose.

Peter Sigley, dealer at Goldman Sachs JBWere, said there was more certainty around its earnings guidance after statistics indicated destocking of inventories in the company's sector.

"There's some relief around a stock that's been pummelled by the market," he said.

Among leading stocks Telecom was down 7c to 239, Fletcher Building slipped 12c to 515, and Contact Energy rose 4c to 555.

Kiwi Income Property Trust was unchanged at 101 after announcing the sale of a building for $12 million to help reduce debt.

TrustPower fell 10c to 715. APN News fell 10c to 120.

Mainfreight lost 10c to 330 and Tourism Holdings was down 7c to 47. Sky City fell 7c to 256.

ANZ rose 85c to 1700 and it announced a rise in underlying profit in in the depths of a downturn in New Zealand in the three months to December.

Fisher & Paykel Healthcare rose 5c to 338.

On Wall St, the Dow Jones industrial average fell 281.40 points, or 4.09 percent, to 6594.44. The Standard & Poor's 500 Index lost 30.32 points, or 4.25 percent, to 682.55. The Nasdaq Composite Index dropped 54.15 points, or 4.00 percent, to 1299.59. NZPA WGT Reuters pjg nb

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