No unannounced reason for share price fall - APN

APN News & Media's shares have fallen from 60 Australian cents on July 18 to as low as 51.5 cents yesterday. Photo / Thinkstock
APN News & Media's shares have fallen from 60 Australian cents on July 18 to as low as 51.5 cents yesterday. Photo / Thinkstock

APN News & Media says it doesn't know of any unannounced information to explain its recent share price fall.

The company, which publishes the New Zealand Herald and nzherald.co.nz, was responding to a query from the Australian Stock Exchange as to why its shares fell from 60 Australian cents on July 18 to as low as 51.5 cents yesterday when the query was made.

The shares ended yesterday on the ASX at 51 Australian cents, down 2.5 cents on the day. The shares have been sliding on the ASX since April 2010 when they hit A$2.54. On the NZX this morning, the shares are steady at 65 New Zealand cents.

APN noted at its annual shareholders' meeting in early May it had said, "assuming current market conditions continue," first-half net profit before exceptional items was expected to be down about A$3 million on the previous first half.

"This remains the company's position," APN said.

At the same meeting, the company said it was reviewing the carrying values of its intangible assets and of its New Zealand assets in particular.

APN also owns other newspapers in New Zealand, such as the Bay of Plenty Time, Hawke's Bay Today and the Wairarapa Times-Age, and magazines, including the Listener, the New Zealand Women's Weekly and New Idea, as well as the Radio Network, which claims a little over 48 per cent of New Zealand's radio market.

"Whilst that review is incomplete, the directors note that there will be a non-cash impairment charge in respect of the New Zealand publishing intangible assets included in the company's half-year results, the quantum of which is yet to be finalised."

APN expects to report on August 17. The company already wrote off A$159 million, mostly from the value of its New Zealand metropolitan newspapers, in calendar 2011 for which it reported a A$45.1 million loss.

- BusinessDesk

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