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NZ Sharemarket Opens On A Flat Note

Contributor:
Fuseworks Media
Fuseworks Media

Wellington, Dec 16 NZPA - The New Zealand sharemarket opened on a flat note today, after stocks fell on Wall Street overnight.

The benchmark NZSX-50 index lost 4.050 points, or 0.151 percent, to 2672.380 in early trading.

Telecom was traded heaviest, initially losing 1c, but then gaining that back to stay at 236.

Kiwi Income Property Trust lost 1c to 99 and Fisher & Paykel Appliances lost 2c to go to 130.

Goodman Fielder shed 9c to go to 150, while NZOG eased 2c to 127.

Rising stocks included Michael Hill International, up 1c to 61, Guinness Peat Group, also up 1c to 94, and AMP Office, up 1c to 98.

Auckland Airport rose 3c to 168.

Air New Zealand remained unchanged at 84, the day after the Commerce Commission took legal action against it and 12 other airlines for alleged "extensive and long-term cartel activity in the air cargo market".

In the United States stocks ended Monday lower as investors' anxieties over the auto industry gave way to fears about the growing list of firms affected by investment manager Bernard Madoff.

Also weighing on the market are earnings reports later this week from the country's two largest investment banks, Goldman Sachs and Morgan Stanley.

Stocks had began the day mixed as investors were relieved to hear that President George W Bush was working on providing short-term government help for the auto industry.

But as companies including HSBC and Banco Santander revealed exposure to Madoff's alleged $US50 ($NZ92) billion pyramid scam, investors worried about the ramifications to the beleaguered financial industry.

According to preliminary calculations, the Dow Jones industrial average has closed down 65 points to the 8564 level.

NZPA WGT AP dw nb

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