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NZ Sharemarket Jolted To Life By Strong US Market

Fuseworks Media
Fuseworks Media

Wellington, July 16 NZPA - The New Zealand sharemarket was jolted to life by a strong US equities market today and the gains were across the board.

The benchmark NZX-50 index closed up 37.434 points, or 1.354 percent, at 2801.515. Turnover was worth $110.25 million.

There were 56 rises and 21 falls among the 114 stocks traded.

"There was positive sentiment around Asia," said Stephen Wright at ASB Securities. The New Zealand market was in the middle of the pack in terms of reacting to Wall Street.

"But at least we are having a much more positive day than we have had up until now," Mr Wright said. He said turnover was nothing to write home about.

The market took news in its stride that Bank of New Zealand could have to pay $654 million in tax and interest and more in penalties after losing a court case against Inland Revenue. The bank is expected to appeal the decision. Cases against other banks are going through the system.

BNZ preference shares trading in New Zealand were little changed, brokers said. ANZ rose 35c to 2070 and Westpac rose 45c to 2525.

News that inflation rose slightly more than expected in the June quarter also had little impact.

The focus of equity investors was squarely on the better than expected US earnings season and the implications for equity markets around the world.

Telecom rose 5c to 269, Contact rose 11c to 591 580 and Fletcher Building rose 17c to 684.

Nuplex rose 11c to 169, AMP rose 26c to 613 and Air NZ rose 3c to 91.

Fisher and Paykel Healthcare rose 6c to 291 and Freightways rose 3c to 285.

APN News rose 17c to 184.

NZX rose 16c to 758 and Restaurant Brands rose 2c to 104.

Lion Nathan rose 18c to 1458 after reiterating a profit forecast and saying major shareholder Kirin had approval from New Zealand for its takeover.

PGG Wrightson fell 2c to 98 and NZ Farming Systems rose 1c to 47.

SkyTV rose 5c to 420. TrustPower was unchanged at 750.

US stocks racked up strong gains on Wednesday, sparked by results from Intel Corp that lifted hopes for a rebound in technology spending and improved corporate profitability.

The Dow Jones industrial average rose 256.72 points, or 3.07 percent, to 8616.21. The Standard & Poor's 500 Index gained 26.84 points, or 2.96 percent, to 932.68, its best gain in nearly two months and putting it solidly back into the black for the year. The Nasdaq Composite Index jumped 63.17 points, or 3.51 percent, to 1862.90.

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