New Zealand shares hit another record, led by Trustpower and Infratil on earnings upgrades, while Fletcher Building gave back gains.
The S&P/NZX50 index rose 0.3 per cent, or 21.2 points, to 8089.32. Within the index, 26 stocks rose, 16 fell and eight were unchanged. Turnover was $179 million.
Grant Davies, investment adviser at Hamilton Hindin Greene, said the stock market is unperturbed by the continued lack of government.
"The market has been through this before, it's really just boiling down to what companies are doing rather than what the government is doing," Davies said. "Stocks are being driven by momentum at the moment."
Xero, Synlait Milk and A2 Milk Co, all of which have seen strong gains over the past fortnight after positive news, continued to rise today. Xero gained 3.1 per cent to $35.10; Synlait rose 0.3 per cent to $7.48; and A2 advanced 0.4 per cent to $7.77.
Trustpower led the index, up 3.9 per cent to $5.89. It raised annual earnings guidance for a third time this financial year with strong wholesale electricity prices on both sides of the Tasman and increased generation in New Zealand, also boosting the outlook for controlling shareholder Infratil whose shares gained 1.6 per cent to $3.16. The Tauranga-based company forecasts earnings before interest, tax, depreciation, amortisation and fair value adjustments to be between $255 million and $270m in the year ending March 31, 2018, up from a previous forecast of $225m-to-$245m. Infratil now sees ebitdaf of between $485m and $525m in the year ending March 31, 2018, up from a previous forecast of $460m-to-$500m.
Fisher & Paykel Healthcare rose 1.3 per cent to $12.82. It is considering whether to appeal a ruling by the Regional Court in Munich that rival ResMed did not infringe its patents in one of the cases in the continuing intellectual property dispute over its face and Nasal masks.
Fletcher Building was the worst performer, down 1.9 per cent to $7.71, though Davies said the stock was just giving back Thursday's gains.
NPT gained 3.5 per cent to 59.5c. The listed property investor has sold its interest in the AA Centre in central Auckland to SkyCity Entertainment Group for $47 million, as it looks to reposition the business after a board overhaul. Sky City fell 0.8 per cent to $3.71.
Warehouse Group dropped 0.9 per cent to $2.14. Founder Sir Stephen Tindall will take a year off from the board to focus on his other commitments, especially the preparations for Auckland to host the America's Cup.
His son Robbie Tindall will stand in as an alternate director, the retailer said.
Stephen Tindall is taking a break to focus on his commitments as Team New Zealand chair, such as securing the necessary infrastructure for Auckland's hosting of the America's Cup defence.