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NZ Sharemarket Continues To Fall With Offshore Markets

Fuseworks Media
Fuseworks Media

Wellington, Nov 13 NZPA - The New Zealand sharemarket closed lower today keeping faith with woeful performances by equity markets around the world.

After the Dow Jones industrial average closed down 411.30 points, or 4.73 percent, at 8282.66 on Wednesday, Asian markets were again weak. The Japanese market was down 5.1 percent and the Australian market down around 4 percent during the New Zealand session.

The benchmark NZSX-50 index closed down 42.563 points, or 1.535 percent, at 2729.623.

Telecom rose 2c to 243, Contact Energy fell 5c to 711, and Fletcher Building was down 16c to 540.

Fisher & Paykel Appliances fell 5c to 132 after reporting a bottom line loss in the six months to September 30 after costs for shifting its manufacturing and cut its dividend. The company said the outlook was too uncertain to forecast a full year figure.

Barry Lindsay, research manager at First NZ Capital, said the volume, which was worth $63.71 million, was " pretty crummy".

"The market is coming down on low volume, with most investors on the side lines," he said.

He said investors were finding it difficult to predict where the market was going while there was such a crisis of confidence.

Ebos Group was down 5c to 430, Freightways 6c to 302, NZ Oil & Gas 9c to 118, and Nuplex 19c to 490.

Rakon was down 11c to 169, Ryman Healthcare 7c to 138, with Sky City down 1c to 302.

Among few risers, Air New Zealand firmed 2c to 90, Goodman Property Trust 1c at 101 and Kiwi Income Property Trust 2c to 101.

There were 17 rises and 75 falls.

US stocks plunged on Wednesday after a shift in how the US government will use its $US700 billion ($NZ1 trillion) bailout fund fed uncertainty and oil prices slid to 21-month lows on fears of a deep global recession.

US Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson said he was backing away from buying troubled mortgage assets and would focus on the capital needs of non-bank financial institutions. The shift in government plans caught investors off-guard.

The Standard & Poor's 500 Index was down 46.65 points, or 5.19 percent, at 852.30. The Nasdaq Composite Index was down 81.69 points, or 5.17 percent, at 1,499.21.

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