NZ shares bounce back led by Port of Tauranga

By Sophie Boot

Photo / File
Photo / File

New Zealand shares bounced back from yesterday's 1.5 per cent drop, led by Port of Tauranga and Scales Corporation while Comvita continued to fall.

The S&P/NZX50 Index rose 45.75 points, or 0.7 per cent, to 6,941.95. Within the index, 29 stocks rose, 12 were unchanged and nine fell. Turnover was $124.8 million.

"There's a little bit of a bounce - the market was obviously very weak yesterday, but it's made back about a third of that today, so maybe people are doing a bit of bargain hunting," said James Smalley, director at Hamilton Hindin Greene. "It's really broad-based but volumes aren't particularly massive. When foreign investors decide to reduce their weighting at the same time as domestic ones, you can get get relatively large movements on low volumes."

Port of Tauranga led the index, up 2.7 per cent to $3.75. Scales Corporation rose 2.4 per cent to $2.09, while Kathmandu Holdings gained 2 per cent to $2.01 and Meridian Energy was up 2 per cent to $2.60.

Comvita dropped 1 per cent to $9.35. The shares slumped 11.4 per cent yesterday after the manuka honey and health products maker warned a first-half loss was on the cards, which chief executive Scott Coulter described as a "blip".

"Maybe a little bit of the gloss is coming off the wellness products selling into China - it has been a very very good place to be invested in but there's a bit of profit taking on that end of the market," Smalley said.

Chorus was the worst performer on the index, down 1.3 per cent to $3.70, while Orion Health Group declined 0.9 per cent to $3.20.

Fonterra Shareholders Fund gained 0.2 per cent to $5.91. The cooperative's Australian business has raised its average farmgate milk price to A$5.10 per kilogram of milk solids and increased its forecast closing price due to strengthening global dairy prices.

Outside the benchmark index, Wellington Drive Technologies gained 3.5 per cent to 15 cents. The company, which makes energy-efficient motors for commercial refrigerators, lifted third-quarter revenue 25 per cent to $6.3 million and is still targeting positive earnings for the year.

Freightways advanced 0.2 per cent to $6.37. The courier and information management company, seen as a bellwether for the New Zealand economy, has reported an upbeat start to the 2017 financial year.

In a first quarter update at the company's annual meeting in Auckland today, Freightways reported a 5.6 per cent rise in operating revenue to $133 million for the three months ended Sept. 30, while net profit rose 9.9 per cent to $14.8 million.

New Zealand Oil & Gas was unchanged at 52 cents. The Wellington-based explorer and producer is likely to make an announcement soon over its senior leadership, chairman Rodger Finlay told shareholders at today's annual meeting in the capital.

In other developments, the organiser of a proposed class action against the directors of failed intelligence software company Wynyard said there has been a rash of shareholders sign up this week since the board appointed voluntary administrators on Tuesday. The Auckland-based company had burned through cash and struggled to deliver on revenue guidance. Its shares had plunged to 21.5 cents when trading was halted earlier this month.

(BusinessDesk)

-BUSINESSDESK

- BusinessDesk

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