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NZ Sharemarket Starts Week With Small Early Gain

Fuseworks Media
Fuseworks Media

Wellington, Nov 9 NZPA - In the first few minutes of trading for the week, Fletcher Building shares lifted further above the two-month low of 786 reached on Thursday.

After gaining 9c on Friday, Fletcher Building shares were up another 5c to 800 a few minutes after today's market opening.

It was one of the main movers as the benchmark NZSX-50 index lifted 4.82 points to 3164.98 by 10.15am, having gained 15.7 points on Friday.

Other early share movements included Mainfreight up 2c to 532, Infratil up 2c to 158, while AMP NZ Office Trust slipped 2c to 78.

Dual-listed bank Westpac was down 5c to 3345 early, while ANZ gained 7c to 2880.

Leading shares Telecom and Contact Energy were unchanged, on 252 and 602, respectively.

Australian and New Zealand insurer AMP was placed on trading halt pending a material announcement.

In the United States, stocks ended Friday's session slightly higher, shrugging off Government data showing the unemployment rate hit 10.2 percent -- the highest in 26-1/2 years.

General Electric Co jumped 6.2 percent after two analysts' upgrades and helped push the industrial sector higher.

"We're certainly seeing continued evidence of economic improvement -- except on the employment side -- but even there, perhaps we may have seen about the worst," said Tim Ghriskey, chief investment officer of Solaris Asset Management in New York.

The Dow Jones industrial average gained 0.2 percent to end at 10,023.42, the Standard & Poor's 500 Index rose 0.3 percent to 1069.30, and the Nasdaq Composite Index added 0.3 percent to close at 2112.44.

For the week, both the Dow and the S&P 500 rose 3.2 percent, while the Nasdaq climbed 3.3 percent.

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