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NZ Sharemarket Ends Higher On Good Volume

Fuseworks Media
Fuseworks Media

Wellington, Sept 3 NZPA - The New Zealand sharemarket gained today but there was a dearth of corporate news to provide direction.

The benchmark NZSX-50 index closed up 16.921 points, or 0.55 percent, at 3091.57. Turnover was worth $124.56 million, mostly care of $43.7m of trade in Fletcher Building and $20.5m in Telecom shares. There were 48 rises and 32 falls among the 114 stocks traded.

"It was a pretty reasonable performance for the New Zealand market today," said Grant Williamson, director at Hamilton, Hindin, Greene.

"Offshore markets overnight were quite flat but the Chinese market is performing very well today and that is boosting some of the Asian markets," he said.

Telecom, which goes ex dividend on Monday, rose 7c to 280, while Fletcher Building rose 11c to 769 in a week in which a number of real estate agents reported on strength in the property market.

Fisher and Paykel Healthcare also featured among the risers, up 8c to 346.

Freightways rose 2c to 293 after saying yesterday it had won Australia Post as a client.

Nuplex rose 3c to 233.

NZ Farming Systems Uruguay rose 2c to 48 and PGG Wrightson fell 2c to 68.

Investors are generally cautious ahead of US non-farm payrolls data on Friday and ahead of the Reserve Bank of New Zealand interest rate decision next week.

It was a good day for retailers. The Warehouse rose 1c to 393, Hallenstein Glasson rose 10c to 280 and Hellaby rose 5c to 140. Michael Hill rose 2c to 71.

Air NZ eased 1c to 124 even though it said today it was voted second best long haul airline by Conde Naste Traveller magazine.

Port of Tauranga fell 6c to 650. SkyCity fell 3c to 328 and Cavalier fell 2c to 248.

Mainfreight fell 10c to 485, while Guinness Peat Group gave up some recent gains to eased 2c to 82.

In the United States, stocks fell as jitters about the economy prompted investors to unload some shares for a fourth-straight day even after a sharp drop in the previous session.

Major indexes fluctuated between positive and negative territory throughout the day before closing in the red.

A labour market report showing more private sector job losses in August than forecast made investors nervous ahead of Friday's highly anticipated monthly jobs data from the US Labor Department.

The Dow Jones industrial average closed down 0.3 percent at 9280.67, the Standard & Poor's 500 Index lost 0.3 percent to 994.75, and the Nasdaq Composite Index fell 0.1 percent to 1967.07.

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