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NZ Sharemarket Opens Weakly

Fuseworks Media
Fuseworks Media

Wellington, Sept 24 NZPA - The New Zealand share market took a slight dip in a tepid start to trading today. Following yesterday's quiet day of trading the NZX-50 index started at 3228.189 and at 10.15 had dropped 0.343 percent, or 11.084 points to be at 3217.105 at 10.15am.

Just after 10am a trading halt was put on PGG Wrightson, at the request of the company while it conducted a bookbuild process for a placement of shares. The trading halt will last until the market opens again tomorrow, or when PGG Wrightson notifies the NZX of the outcome.

ING Property made an early gain of 2c to 74c, while Telecom shed 3c to 277c and Fletcher Building dropped 4c to 7.26. Contact Energy lost 5c early to drop to 855c.

Overnight US stocks fell on Tuesday on fears that congressional wrangling could delay a proposed $US700 billion ($NZ1.04 trillion) plan to rescue the financial sector, increasing worries about the struggling US economy.

Bank of America shares shed 2.5 percent, or 85 cents, to $33.30 and General Electric fell 4.6 percent to $24.95 after an analyst at Goldman Sachs cut the profit outlook on the diversified manufacturer.

The Dow Jones industrial average was down 161.52 points, or 1.47 percent, at 10,854.17. The Standard & Poor's 500 Index was down 18.87 points, or 1.56 percent, at 1188.22. The Nasdaq Composite Index was down 25.64 points, or 1.18 percent, at 2153.34.

About 1.15 billion shares changed hands on the New York Stock Exchange, below last year's estimated daily average of roughly 1.90 billion, while on Nasdaq, about 2.00 billion shares traded, also below last year's daily average of 2.17 billion.

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