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NZ Sharemarket Falls In Early Trade

Fuseworks Media
Fuseworks Media

Wellington, Oct 22 NZPA - The New Zealand sharemarket fell in early trade, with leading shares heading lower after a stock market rally unravelled late in the United States.

Telecom shares were down 2c early to 253, Fletcher Building fell 4c to 836, and Contact Energy was down 7c to 620.

Around 10.15am the benchmark NZSX-50 index was down 10.8 points to 3207.42, following a 34.3-point fall yesterday on a combination of profit-taking and weakness in offshore markets.

Among other shares to fall early today, Nuplex was down 3c to 236, Sky TV lost 3c to 469, and Trustpower fell 3c to 754. Dual-listed bank ANZ fell 28c to 2900 and Westpac dropped 10c to 3220.

Stocks rising early included NZ Refining Co up 5c to 530, Mainfreight up 5c to 560, Steel & Tube up 2c to 315, Port of Tauranga up 2c to 727, and Infratil up 2c to 164.

A trading halt was placed on Pyne Gould Corporation as the company carries out a bookbuild process for a share placement.

Yesterday, Pyne Gould's shares were unchanged at 46c after the company announced the takeup of its fully underwritten $237m rights issue.

A shortfall of only 11.3 percent in the huge rights issue was well received as evidence of the market's ability to provide capital.

In the United States, spooked traders unravelled a stock market rally late in the session as worries mounted about banks and a jump in the price of oil.

Analysts said a downbeat note from influential banking analyst Richard Bove raised concerns about Wells Fargo and sent investors rushing to dump financial stocks.

Oil also touched a new high for the year, and Wal-Mart Stores said it was stepping up its price-cutting, a sign that consumers are still struggling.

The Dow Jones industrial average ended down 92 points, or 0.9 percent to 9949.36, after having risen 78 points earlier in the day to a new high for the year.

The broader Standard & Poor's 500 index fell 0.9 percent to 1081.40, and the Nasdaq composite index fell 0.6 percent to 2150.73.

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