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NZ Sharemarket Slightly Down, Employment Data Weak

Fuseworks Media
Fuseworks Media

By Paloma Migone of NZPA

Wellington, Nov 5 NZPA - The New Zealand sharemarket drifted down today after weak employment data caused investors to question the strength of the recovery.

T he benchmark NZSX-50 index closed down 22.201 points, or 0.701 percent, at 3144.507, having opened at 3179.42.

Turnover was worth $57.52 million. There were 45 rises and 25 falls among the 106 stocks traded. "We are starting to see investors a little bit nervous. The offshore markets were quite good last night, but we did see a late sell off on the Dow Jones, which was up over 100 to be only up 30 on the close," said Grant Williamson, director at Hamilton, Hindin, Greene.

"I think investors are wondering what is going to happen to the offshore markets tonight. And it's just another excuse to sell and take some profit from the recent rally."

Another factor affecting the market is the "disappointing" unemployment figures released today, said Mr Williamson.

"I think investors are starting to wonder whether the recovery of the economy is actually as strong as what the equity market is suggesting."

Among leading shares Fletcher Building was down 13c to 786, Telecom was also down 6c to 248 and Contact dropped 15c to 599.

Rising stocks included Westpac 50c to 3270, NZ Refining Co 7c to 517, Fisher & Paykel Healthcare 6c to 318, and Freightway 3c to 308.

Hellaby Holdings Ltd was down 2c to 164 after having its annual meeting in Auckland today. Nuplex fell 3c to 240, Infratil was up 1c to 159 and SkyTV was up 1c to 480.

Stocks falling today included Trustpower 10c to 748, Kiwi Income Property Trust 3c to 105 and Tower 3c to 167.

Goodman Property Trust fell 2c to 101.

"Goodman is looking at a bond issue and also had the interim results, which were maybe just a touch disappointing, and we are seeing the price off a couple of cents," said Mr Williamson.

In the United States, stocks rallied but lost steam after the Fed's announcement.

The Dow Jones industrial average gained 0.3 percent to end unofficially at 9801.83, the Standard & Poor's 500 Index gained 0.1 percent to finish unofficially at 1046.50, while the Nasdaq Composite Index dropped 0.1 percent to close unofficially at 2055.52.

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