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NZ sharemarket falls early

Fuseworks Media
Fuseworks Media

Wellington, July 22 NZPA - The New Zealand sharemarket fell in early trade after stocks in the United States was hit by a dour assessment of the US recovery from Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke.

Mr Bernanke acknowledged the US labour market's continued weakness while offering few specific options to stimulate lending and investment.

"The market sold off because unfortunately there is no remedy provided in Bernanke's commentary to the rising threat of deflation, the excess capacity in the economy and the malfunctioning of the credit system," said Joe Battipaglia, market strategist at Stifel Nicolaus in Yardley, Pennsylvania.

"We are now giving up on the notion of a standard recovery in the US economy."

In New Zealand, the benchmark NZX-50 index was down 6.25 points to 2997.16 around 10.15am, after yesterday gaining 8 points which had nudged it back above the 3000 level.

Mainfreight was down 5c to 635, NZ Refining Co lost 5c to 310, Port of Tauranga dropped 5c to 685, Sky TV lost 3c to 475, Fisher & Paykel Healthcare was down 3c to 296, Cavalier Corp fell 2c to 248, Telecom lost 2c to 194, Contact Energy slipped 1c to 569, and Fletcher Building eased 1c to 769.

Abano Healthcare gained 5c to 515 and Livestock Improvement Corp lifted 4c to 304.

The Dow Jones industrial average lost 1.1 percent to 10,120.45, the Standard & Poor's 500 fell 1.3 percent to 1069.57, and the Nasdaq Composite dropped 1.6 percent to 2187.33.

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