Sky TV leads gains for second day

New Zealand shares rose on light volume as investors took a cue from European share markets with Wall Street closed for Labor Day. Sky Network Television continued to rally ahead of its result.

Tuesday, September 8th 2020, 6:36PM

by BusinessDesk

The S&P/NZX 50 Index increased 36.18 points, or 0.3 percent, to 11,895.63. Within the index, 30 stocks rose, 16 fell and four were unchanged. Turnover was $125.8 million.

“It’s been a predictably quiet start to the week with US markets out for the Labor Day holiday and not much in the way of new news released,” Mike Jones, an ASB economist said.

However, a bounce in European equity markets and US futures rising half a percent gave local investors the confidence to do some buying.

“European markets were open and reasonably buoyant last night and that’s flowing through to New Zealand,” said Grant Davies, an investment adviser at Hamilton Hindin Greene.

Some investors appear to have high expectations for Sky Network Television’s full year results on Thursday. The pay-TV company led the market higher for a second day, jumping 10.2 percent to 16.2 cents on a large volume of more than 15 million shares.

Sky TV has already confirmed it will meet guidance—with a net profit midpoint of $22.5 million and an earnings mid-point of $165 million - so investors will focus on the outlook, Davies said. 

“All eyes will be on the overall subscriber numbers and what sort of traction they are getting online,” he said. “Most of analysts value them a little bit higher than where they are now, but I think the market has been waiting for the proof.”

Chorus hit a record, peaking at $9.10 before closing at $9.05, up 5.2 percent on the day and more than 45 percent since the start of the year.

“Investors are taking a bit of a punt that the regulatory regime won’t be too arduous for them and banking on that defensive dividend for the foreseeable future,” Davies said. 

SkyCity Entertainment Group rose 3.9 percent to $2.96 as it continued to rally, gaining 18 percent since its earnings result last Thursday.

Restaurant Brands rose 0.8 percent to $12.15. Today the company reported a drop in net profit of $8.6 million for the six months ended June 30. Whilst difficult to quantify exactly, the NZ stores being closed for five full weeks meant it missed out on more than $40 million of sales.

Pushpay Holdings posted the day’s biggest loss, dropping 2.5 percent to $7.76 — now almost 20 percent off its June record but still more than triple its March low.

Briscoe Group said it trimmed the impact of the coronavirus crisis to report a 1.3 percent decline in first-half net profit and even managed to fatten margins and raise its dividend.

Davies said investors were pleased with the result, with the stock tracking up 2.7 percent at $3.84 despite already having good momentum on the back of strong results from other listed retailers.

Serko gained another 1.9 percent to close at $4.34 as investors buy it ahead of its inclusion in the NZX 50 index later in the month. It has gained more than 10 percent since the announcement.

The NZ dollar fell against the greenback throughout trade today, as the US currency made gains amid thin trading volumes. 

The kiwi dollar was trading 66.83 US cents at 5pm in Wellington, down from 67.04 cents yesterday.

The trade-weighted index was at 71.94 at 5pm, from 72.07 yesterday. The kiwi traded at 91.81 Australian cents up from 92.02 cents, 71.01 yen from 71.22 yen, 56.58 euro cents from 56.65 cents, 50.86 British pence from 50.67 pence, and 4.5683 Chinese yuan from 4.5780 yuan.

Tags: Market Close

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