The New Zealand sharemarket became "a little gun-shy", falling nearly 1 per cent, in a reaction to the volatility in leading offshore indices. But late trading did push the NZX index back up.
The S&P/NZX 50 Index slid 117.32 points or 0.96 per cent to 12,084.47 after reaching an intraday high of 12,223.45. Market heavyweight Fisher and Paykel Healthcare led the way down with a 5 per cent fall.
There were 79 gainers and 66 decliners over the whole market of 183 stocks, and volume was heavy, thanks to strong late trading, with a total of 67.64 million share transactions worth $234.31 million.
Mark Lister, head of private wealth research with Craigs Investment Partners, said the local market was taking a lead from what's happening overseas. "We have partial lockdowns in France and Germany, a resurgence of coronavirus in the United States, and then there's the US election.
"The US futures are down as well and we may have another volatile night over there. There's every reason for our market to be a little gun-shy," he said. "Investors have taken money off the table and sitting on the sideline to see where the dust settles – and how bad the Covid-19 situation gets overseas."
Fisher and Paykel Healthcare wasn't helped by a strong first-quarter result from its main competitor, ResMed Inc, which climbed 9.15 per cent to A$27.845 (at 5.45pm) on the Australian S&P/ASX 200 Index. Fisher and Paykel plunged $1.99 or 5.38 per cent to $35 on trade worth $57.46m, having one of its most volatile weeks.
Lister said ResMed is having strong growth and may have stolen a march on Fisher and Paykel with some of its competing products, such as ventilators, masks and sleep apnea devices. ResMed's revenue increased 10 per cent and net operating profit 27 per cent in the first three months of its 2021 financial year.
Mercury Energy rose 22c or 4.29 per cent to $5.35; Mainfreight gained 45c to $53.95; Summerset Group Holdings increased 18c to $10.40, Sanford was up 10c to $5.55, and Goodman Property rose 5.5c or 2.27 per cent to $2.48. Auckland International Airport fell 6c to $7, and a2 Milk was down 22c to $14.64.
AdvertisementAdvertise with NZME.
AMP announced it has received a conditional takeover offer from United States Ares Management Corporation and there is no certainty a transaction will eventuate. AMP's share price climbed 28c or 20.74 per cent to $1.63.
Port of Tauranga reported flat earnings for the first quarter of the 2021 financial year and its share price fell 11c to $7.24. A competitor Southport in Bluff had a sharp rise, increasing 27.5c or 3.81 per cent to $7.50.
The Tauranga port company told shareholders at the annual meeting that the first-quarter net profit is $21.5m compared with $21.7m in the previous corresponding period, and full-year earnings are forecast between $86m and $93m. The port is still planning for long-term cargo growth.
The market's two cannabis stocks took a hit following the preliminary result of the referendum, with 53.1 per cent voting against the Cannabis Legalisation and Control Bill for recreational use, with 480,000 special votes still to be counted.
Cannasouth was down 13c or 16.67 per cent to 65c, and Rua Bioscience, which listed last week, decreased 2c to 66c. Both companies say they are in the business for medicinal cannabis, which can be prescribed.
Tourism Holdings indicated to shareholders at its annual meeting that the company will not make a profit in the 2021 financial year and its share price was unchanged at $2.24. Instead of raising capital, Tourism Holdings has been selling surplus motor homes to generate cash.