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NZ sharemarket eases but outperforms other markets

Fuseworks Media
Fuseworks Media

Wellington, Aug 11 NZPA - The New Zealand sharemarket managed to outperform weak offshore markets to end just a touch lower today.

The benchmark NZX-50 index closed down 9.097 points, or 0.299 percent, at 3036.009. Turnover was worth just $50.54 million. There were 28 rises and 43 falls among the 109 stocks traded.

"The market actually had an okay tone. Asia had a negative day so New Zealand is performing pretty well," said James Lee, head of institutional equities at First NZ Capital.

He said there was little news for investors to trade on today.

DNZ Property was happy with the price set for its capital raising in an announcement today ahead of its listing on the market on Monday.

Telecom has risen to 209 from a low of 178 in July but ended today at 204, down 3c from yesterday.

Mr Lee said it was hard to know the future of Telecom. There was little detail on its separation plan but demerged businesses typically added value for investors.

Fletcher Building rose 3c to 757. The demerged business of the former Fletcher Challenge Corporation today paid tribute to Sir Ron Trotter on his death.

Tenon, another former Fletcher Challenge business, fell 1c to 90. Air NZ fell 2c to 113.

Infratil, which was confident of its earnings outlook at its annual meeting today, rose 1c to 163.

SkyTV fell 7c to 503, NZ Refining fell 3c to 300 and Nuplex fell 4c to 300. SkyCity fell 1c to 306. Ebos Group fell 5c to 660.

Fisher and Paykel Healthcare rose 1c to 51 on good volume. Methven rose 3c to 156 and NZ Farming Systems Uruguay rose 1c to 56.

Tourism Holdings rose 1c to 76 and Restaurant Brands rose 3c to 251.

Mainfreight shares fell 8c to 650, falling further away from the 22-month high of 680 reached early last week.

In the United States, stocks fell but closed off their lows after the Federal Reserve said it would take new steps to counter a weak recovery.

The Fed's Open Market Committee said in a post-meeting statement that it would begin funnelling proceeds from maturing mortgage bonds into longer term government debt to keep borrowing costs low.

The stock market's lukewarm response suggested investors didn't believe the actions would have much immediate impact on the weak labour market and slow consumer spending, two headwinds facing the recovery.

The Dow Jones industrial average was down 0.5 percent at 10,644.25, the Standard & Poor's 500 Index was down 0.6 percent at 1121.06, and the Nasdaq Composite Index was down 1.2 percent at 2277.17.

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