Sharemarket snaps three-day slide

Chorus make gains after watchdog-induced tumble while Xero climbs again.

Postie Plus rose after avoiding a breach of its banking covenants. Photo / NZPA
Postie Plus rose after avoiding a breach of its banking covenants. Photo / NZPA

New Zealand shares rose, snapping a three-day slide as equity markets across the Asia-Pacific region generally gained.

Xero resumed its climb after two US funds gave the company equity capital and Chorus clawed back from its regulator-induced plunge.

The NZX 50 index rose 16.11 points, or 0.4 per cent, to 4023.36. Within the index, 23 stocks rose, 14 fell and 13 were unchanged. Turnover was $131 million.

Xero, the cloud-based accounting service, rose 5.6 per cent to $7.60, edging back to the record high $7.75 reached on Monday, having raised $60 million selling shares to Peter Thiel-backed Valar Ventures and Matrix Capital. That's enough funds for three years at the current burn rate.

"Clearly there's been quite a substantial change in the makeup of the register," said Shane Solly, portfolio manager at Mint Asset Management. Xero now has "a bit of capital to support the growth".

Chorus, the network company spun off from Telecom last year, rose 2.2 per cent to $2.85, its second daily gain after a two-day, 18.5 per cent slump after the Commerce Commission released a draft determination the company said could slash annual pretax earnings as much as $160 million.

"We're still in the depths of uncertainty with Chorus," Solly said. "People particularly concerned have done their selling. For a lot of New Zealand businesses, where the regulator's been involved New Zealand doesn't have a great track record."

OceanaGold, whose interests range from the Macraes gold field in Central Otago to its Didipio project in the Philippines, fell 1.9 per cent to $3.53, extending Wednesday's 12.2 per cent slump after the company unexpectedly raised C$93.3 million ($113.4 million) selling 30 million shares for C$3.11 apiece in Canada.

"There's a bit of surprise the company raised capital when people didn't think they needed to," Solly said.

Fletcher Building, the biggest company on the NZX 50, rose 1.5 per cent to $7.97. The Reserve Bank kept its official cash rate at a record low 2.5 per cent, helping anchor mortgage rates and allowing the housing market to continue its revival.

Telecom rose 0.2 per cent to $2.275.

Postie Plus Group rose 5 per cent to 21c after announcing it has again avoided a breach of its banking covenants and gained a 12-month extension on its facilities.

Pumpkin Patch, the children's clothing retailer, rose 4 per cent to $1.30 and carpet maker Cavalier rose 3 per cent to $1.71.

NZX, the stock market operator, rose 1.7 per cent to $1.23 after holding an investor open day. NZ Oil & Gas climbed 1.7 per cent to 88c.

- BusinessDesk

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