Article – BusinessDesk
March 20 (BusinessDesk) New Zealand shares rose, led by cloud-based accounting firm Xero, which added another $100 million to its market value to reach a new record while Sky Network Television rose to the highest in almost two years.
MARKET CLOSE: NZ shares edge higher as Xero charts new record, Sky TV gains
March 20 (BusinessDesk) – New Zealand shares rose, led by cloud-based accounting firm Xero, which added another $100 million to its market value to reach a new record while Sky Network Television rose to the highest in almost two years.
The NZX 50 Index gained 4.39 points, or 0.1 percent, to 4349.43. Within the index, 21 stocks rose, 13 fell and 16 were unchanged. Turnover was about $131 million.
Xero rose about 8 percent to $11.50. Investors who bought the stock a year ago have more than tripled their money. The stock has climbed since founder and chief executive Rod Drury said two days ago that the gains reflect increased overseas investor appetite for exposure to Software as a Service technology.
Sky TV extended its advance, rising 1.5 percent to $5.49. The stock has gained 9.4 percent since News Corp sold its 44 percent stake in the company, boosting liquidity and making it easier to trade. The pay-TV company is rated ‘outperform’ based on a Reuters poll of nine analysts, with a median price target of $5.535.
Air New Zealand led gains in transport related companies, rising 2.8 percent to $1.49. Mainfreight gained 1.8 percent to $11.75 and Port of Tauranga rose 1.5 percent to $13.70.
Clothing retailer Hallenstein Glasson Holding rose 1.3 percent to $5.57 while Warehouse Group dropped about 5 percent to $3.62, the biggest decline on the NZX 50, after shedding its 15.5 cent interim dividend. Briscoe Group fell about 2 percent to $2.50 after shedding its 7 cent final dividend.
Chorus, the network company spun off from Telecom in 2011, was unchanged at $2.92 after Moody’s Investors Service confirmed its Baa2 credit rating while keeping the outlook negative because of the “high regulatory uncertainty in relation to the unbundled bitstream access pricing determination.”
Ebos Group, the medical supplies and pet products company, rose 1.7 percent to $9.10.
PGG Wrightson, the nation’s largest rural services company, rose 5.6 percent to 38 cents after prices surged in the latest GlobalDairyTrade auction.
Telecom declined 1.1 percent to $2.255 and Fletcher Building, the biggest company on the NZX 50, fell 0.6 percent to $8.57.