Half billion dollar day for NZX

  • 18/03/2016

By Sophie Boot

New Zealand shares hit another record high and turnover topped $500 million as 7.5 percent of Sky Network Television changed hands and large parcels of several top 10 companies changed hands.

The S&P/NZX 50 Index rose 50.06 points, or 0.8 percent, to 6,623.51. Within the index, 31 stocks rose, 15 fell and four were unchanged. Turnover was $511 million.

"It looks like someone was doing a portfolio buy," said James Smalley, director at Hamilton Hindin Greene.

"We were put in 'late adjust'. The announcement was made a few minutes before 5 o'clock. That's typical when there's either a big portfolio buy or sell, generally of a foreign investor."

Sky TV had 29.2 million shares sold, Meridian Energy had 34.8 million, Spark saw 14.6 million shares traded and SkyCity Entertainment Group had 9.1 million.

While Sky TV ended the day 0.6 percent lower at $4.95, $145 million in the stock was sold, the biggest volume since March 2013 when News Limited sold its stake. The dual-listed stock was up 0.2 percent in afternoon trading on Australia's ASX 200.

Mighty River Power led the index, up 4 percent to $2.89.

Kiwi Property Group grew 3.6 percent to $1.43. The property investor said its earnings for the year end March 31 are expected to include a significant property revaluation gain, up a net $175 to $180 million.

A2 Milk Co advanced 2.7 percent to $1.91.

Metlifecare rose 2.7 percent to $4.98, and Freightways increased 2.6 percent to $6.35

Air New Zealand gained 2.5 percent to $2.84.

Fletcher Building rose 1.2 percent to $7.69. The stock has gained 17 percent since announcing its first-half earnings in mid-February.

New Zealand Refining Co dropped 2.2 percent to $3.17. On Thursday it reported disappointing throughput data for the first two months of the year.

Steel & Tube fell 1.3 percent to $2.26.