Weakening kiwi aids share rise

  • 21/10/2015
Weakening kiwi aids share rise

By Suze Metherell

New Zealand shares rose as a weakening kiwi dollar and demand for dividends boosted equities.

Meridian Energy, Fletcher Building and Fisher & Paykel Healthcare advanced. Sky Network Television plunged after forecasting a drop in profit.

The S&P/NZX 50 Index rose 22.76 points, 0.4 percent, to 5918.25. Within the index, 34 stocks rose, 10 fell, and six were unchanged. Turnover was $190 million.

The benchmark index extended yesterday's 1 percent gain in broad-based buying, as investors sought dividend-paying equities in the face of interest rates staying low for longer.

Meanwhile, a decline overnight in the kiwi dollar boosted sentiment for export-based stocks which earn their cash offshore.

Fletcher led the benchmark index higher up 2.8 percent to $7.36. Meridian climbed 2.3 percent to $2.26. F&P Healthcare, which earns the majority of its sales in US, advanced 1.7 percent to $7.67. Genesis Energy rose 1.6 percent to $1.885. Argosy Property gained 1.4 percent to $1.115. Ebos advanced 1.9 percent to a fresh record high of $14.

Sky TV was the worst performer on the benchmark, falling 11 percent to $4.68. New Zealand's dominant pay TV provider expects profit will fall as much as 11 percent in the 2016 financial year to between $153M and $158M.

A2 Milk Co declined 5.1 percent to 75 cents. The company's largest shareholder, Freedom Foods Group, has reduced its stake to 10.4 percent from 17.9 percent after its punt at a takeover was rejected.

Outside the benchmark index, Tenon rose 6.5 percent to $2.45 after it said underlying earnings doubled in the first quarter to US$6M and are on track to meet its US$20M target for the full year.

On the NZ Alternative Index, Snakk Media rose 2.1 percent to 4.8 cents. The company reported earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortisation of $50,541 in the three months ended Sept. 30, compared to an ebitda loss of $1.24 million a year earlier.