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Auckland Airport and Chorus earnings lead rally

Within the S&P/NZX 50 Index , 22 stocks rose, 22 fell and six were unchanged.
Within the S&P/NZX 50 Index , 22 stocks rose, 22 fell and six were unchanged.

New Zealand shares rose, led by Auckland Airport and Chorus on their strong earnings reports. A2 Milk Co dropped.

The S&P/NZX 50 Index rose 30.63 points, or 0.5 per cent, to 6,141.72. Within the index, 22 stocks rose, 22 fell and six were unchanged. Turnover was $193 million.

Auckland International Airport led the index, up 7.6 per cent to $6.34, the highest level since the company split its shares in 2005.

READ MORE:
Chorus back to paying dividends
Wynyard trading halt extended to Tuesday

Chorus also gained, rising 5 per cent to $3.96. Chorus will start paying dividends again after the Commerce Commission's decision to let the telecommunications network operator charge its customers more for access to its copper lines, easing some of the regulatory burden that dragged first-half profit down 48 per cent.

Freightways gained 3.3 per cent to $6.25, Skellerup Holdings rose 2.3 per cent to $1.36 and Fonterra Shareholders Fund advanced 2.2 per cent to $5.64.

Port of Tauranga was unchanged at $18.

A2 Milk was the biggest loser on the index, dropping 9.4 per cent to $1.84, having gained on Wednesday following its first-half profit announcement. Around 20 million shares in the stock were traded yesterday, making it the top stock by volume.

Xero fell 2.9 per cent to $14.60, while Australia & New Zealand Banking Group dropped 2 per cent to $25.

Outside the benchmark, OceanaGold rose 4.6 per cent to $4.34.

The gold and copper miner said its annual profit halved due to low commodity prices and extra costs from its purchase of Waihi Gold Mine and the construction of the Haile Gold Mine in South Carolina. The company said yesterday it has a significant pipeline of organic growth and exploration opportunities in the Australasia and Americas regions.

Hellaby Holdings fell 0.4 per cent to $2.63. The diversified investment company posted a 65 per cent drop in first-half profit with revenue from three of its four segments falling, but says it expects a better second half from its oil division as it tries to sell its loss-making footwear division.

Wynyard Group will stay in a trading halt until February 23, pending an announcement by the software developer over its capital raising plans. Wynyard's shares last traded at $1.54 and have shed 16 per cent so far this year.

- BusinessDesk

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