MARKET CLOSE: NZ shares fall, led by Auckland Airport

Article – BusinessDesk

Dec. 30 (BusinessDesk) – New Zealand shares fell in light trading, with many institutional investors absent from the market for summer holidays. Auckland International Airport and Vector led the decline.

MARKET CLOSE: NZ shares fall, led by Auckland Airport

By Jonathan Underhill

Dec. 30 (BusinessDesk) – New Zealand shares fell in light trading, with many institutional investors absent from the market for summer holidays. Auckland International Airport and Vector led the decline.

The NZX 50 Index fell 15.128 points, or 0.3 percent, to 5577.201. Within the index, 30 stocks fell, 13 rose and seven were unchanged. Turnover was about $53 million, compared to a daily average $162 million in November. The index has gained about 18 percent this year, adding to 2013’s 24 percent advance.

Auckland Airport fell 2.3 percent to $4.30 and Vector fell 2.1 percent to $2.78. Trade Me Group, the online auction company, fell 1.9 percent to $3.60 and A2 Milk dropped 1.7 percent to 57 cents.

“Most institutions have pretty much packed up and headed off for the next week or so – volumes are extremely light,” said Grant Williamson, a director at Hamilton Hindin Greene. “2014 has proven to be a year better than most people expected after 2013. We’ve had the election, the SOEs listing and a big rally in electricity stocks following the election win.”

“Overall, the majority of our companies from an earnings point of view have performed very well,” he said.

Meridian Energy rose 1.5 percent to $1.75, Genesis Energy gained 0.2 percent to $2.15 and MightyRiverPower fell 0.3 percent to $2.97. Contact Energy fell 0.2 percent to $6.38.

Fletcher Building was an exception that disappointed, he said. It is heading for an annual decline of about 2.7 percent, trading unchanged at $8.30 today. The Australian economy had held Fletcher back somewhat, Williamson said.

Infratil fell for a second day, down 0.3 percent to $3, even though its plan to buy Australian retirement village operator RetireAustralia with the New Zealand Superannuation Fund had been well received.

Retirement villages were a sector investors “liked very much, with very good potential for future growth” and Infratil had shown with investments such as Z Energy and Metlifecare that it could generate good returns, he said.

Metlifecare was unchanged at $4.71. Ryman Healthcare rose 1.3 percent to $8.60 and Summerset Group fell 1.4 percent to $2.83.

Guinness Peat Group was the biggest gainer, rising 4.7 percent to 45 cents and Diligent Board member Services gained 3.1 percent to $5.30.

(BusinessDesk)

Content Sourced from scoop.co.nz
Original url