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The Markets

NZ sharemarket ends quiet week with an upward tick

The New Zealand sharemarket finished one of the quietest weeks of the year with another flat trading day, while some of the steam came out of United States stocks.

Friday, July 21st 2023, 6:21PM

by BusinessDesk

The S&P/NZX 50 Index made some headway late in the session and closed at 11,940.44, up 8.33 points or 0.07%.

The index reached an intraday low of 11,903.31 points and was down 0.4% for the week. It has now risen 4% so far this year.

There was an even spread of 63 gainers and 63 decliners over the whole market on volumes of 31.05 million share transactions worth $116.35m.

The volumes were boosted by changes in several indices, including MSCI, with 4.12m Meridian shares worth $21.93m changing hands. Meridian was down 15.5c or 2.83% to $5.315.

Oceania Healthcare, another stock affected, was unchanged at 75c after 1.55m shares worth $1.16m were traded.

Shane Solly, portfolio manager with Harbour Asset Management, said, “We’ve had a pretty flat week and globally, we saw a pause in stock rises as US long-term bond yields went up.

“Employment is holding up better than expected in the US and the bond market is pricing in another interest rate hike. This has made investors wary as some markets have moved a long way.

“Our market has underperformed and maybe we will hold up better if things start to fall back.”

The Dow Jones Industrial Average still had its ninth successive day of rises, gaining 0.47% to 35,225.18 points. But the S&P 500 Index was down 0.68% to 4534.87 points and the Nasdaq Composite declined 2.05% to 14,063.31, matching the biggest single-day fall this year.

An unusual move by the Nasdaq managers to reduce the weightings of the large technology stocks and spread the risk took some of the puff from the market. 

“That created a little bit of volatility,” said Solly.

Tesla warned that vehicle production would slow during the third quarter because of shutdowns for factory improvements, and its share price fell 9.74% to US$262.90 (NZ$422.26).

Back in NZ

At home, Auckland International Airport increased 15c or 1.84% to $8.30 on speculation that Auckland Council is making a placement for the sale of a 7% stake out of its 18% shareholding.

Chorus added 11c to $8.33; Freightways collected 7c to $8.56; a2 Milk was up 6c to $5.567; Delegat Group increased 22c or 2.55% to $8.85; and Winton Land gained 5c or 2.44% to $2.10.

Hallenstein Glasson increased 9c to $6.60; Vital Healthcare Property Trust was up 4c to $2.40; and Just Life Group improved 2c or 7.14% to 30c.

AFT Pharmaceuticals increased 2c to $3.70 after announcing a licensing agreement with French pharma company Crossject to market an epilepsy-related drug in Australia and New Zealand. The drug Zeneo Midazolam is administered needle-free for the rescue treatment of epileptic seizures.

Mercury Energy decreased 6.5c to $6.41; Tower declined 1c to 61c; Tourism Holdings shed 10c or 2.81% to $3.46; and Pacific Edge was down 0.005c or 2.55% to 19.1c.

Allied Farmers declined 3c or 4.05% to 71c, and PaySauce fell 1.5c or 5.88% to 24c.

Infratil, up 2c to $9.85, has completed its $150m six-year infrastructure bond issue, carrying an interest rate of 6.9%. The bonds will be issued on July 31.

Westpac, down 10c to $23.91, has completed its restructuring by appointing chief executives for consumer and business banking and exiting nine businesses. The specialist businesses division has been disbanded and operations have moved into corporate services with a standalone technology function.

Blis Technologies, a manufacturer of advanced probiotic strains, gained 0.003c or 13.04% to 2.6c after reporting 18% revenue growth to $2.8m for the June quarter compared with the same period last year. Operating earnings (Ebitda) were breakeven compared with a loss of $300,000 in the previous June quarter.

ANZ Research has reduced the farmgate milk price forecast for the 2023-24 season by 50c to $7.75 per kg of milk solids but maintained the forecast of $8.20 for the present season.

ANZ said global demand for dairy products has been impacted by deteriorating economic conditions affecting consumer demand, particularly in China.

Tags: Market Close

« NZ sharemarket subdued as the bulls charge on Wall StreetNZ sharemarket starts the week on a positive note »

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