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NZ sharemarket little changed as RBNZ cautious on economy

Contributor:
Fuseworks Media
Fuseworks Media

Wellington, Sept 16 NZPA - The New Zealand sharemarket was little changed today as Fletcher Building came under profit-taking pressure, but brokers said there was reasonable support for second-tier stocks.

The NZX also encountered technical problems today and for some of the morning index feeds were not available. The failure in multiple hardware servers did not interrupt trading.

The benchmark NZX 50 index closed up 0.353 points, or 0.011 percent, at 3195.633.

Grant Williamson, director at Hamilton, Hindin, Greene, said the market held up well considering the bleakness of a Reserve Bank of New Zealand (RBNZ) monetary policy statement.

Westpac said the RBNZ downgraded its economic projections more than expected. It held the official cash rate at 3 percent. Westpac said the next rate hike may not be until March next year.

Fletcher Building fell 2c to 833, which brokers attributed to profit-taking from its run higher in the wake of the Christchurch earthquake.

Auckland Airport fell 2c to 207 and Steel & Tube 5c to 250.

Contact Energy rose 2c to 580 and Cavalier Carpets 1c to 291. Nuplex rose 6c to 344.

Sanford, an exporter, rose 4c to 403 on a day the New Zealand dollar fell sharply after the RBNZ statement. Port of Tauranga rose 9c to 674.

Telecom rose 1c to 207 and Telstra 2c to 358.

TrustPower rose 4c to 744 and Freightways fell 3c to 297.

Air New Zealand was unchanged at 129 on a day Jetstar detailed expansion plans in the domestic New Zealand market.

NZX shares were unchanged at 162.

In the United States, Wall Street advanced but remained hemmed in a recent trading range.

Markets were pressured early by a report showing a measure of New York state business conditions slipped to the lowest level in more than a year, while industrial output rose at a slower rate in August.

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