New Zealand shares rose after the three-day weekend, led by A2 Milk, Fisher & Paykel Healthcare and Sky Network Television. Cavalier jumped after giving guidance for improved full-year earnings.

The S&P/NZX 50 Index rose 120.88 points, or 1.4 per cent, to 8,757.04. Within the index, 41 stocks rose, seven fell and two were unchanged. Turnover was $159 million.

A2 rose 5.3 per cent to $11. The milk marketer has fallen from a peak of $14.62 in late February on concern about increased rivalry in the Chinese market and on disappointment margins haven't grown as fast as sales.

"It's a company that's had pretty good growth but has disappointed in the rate of growth and so the shares have come slowly back. Today is a recovery day," said Rickey Ward, NZ equity manager at JBWere.


Ward said A2 may also have benefited from Fonterra Cooperative Group's comment today that strong demand out of China continues with imports across all key categories up for the 12 months to March.

Synlait Milk rose 1.6 per cent to $11.14, while the Fonterra Shareholders' Fund fell 0.2 per cent to $5.20.

Investore Property gained 5.4 per cent to $1.57, leading the index higher.

Meridian Energy rose 2.9 per cent to $3.15 after saying it is considering offering up to $200m of seven-year unsecured, unsubordinated fixed rate bonds to institutional and New Zealand retail investors.

JBWere's Ward said other listed corporates may also look to tap the bond market "to take advantage of an investment community with a lot of cash and looking for places to invest" as a result of corporate activity such as the $438m takeover of NZX-listed Tegel Group by Philippines-based poultry group Bounty Fresh Foods and recent bond maturities.

Corporates may also want to raise debt capital to benefit from current low interest rates, given the signs are that interest rates will rise from here, Ward said.

F&P Healthcare rose 3.2 per cent to $13.91 and Sky TV rose 2.6 per cent to $2.38.

Kathmandu Holdings was the worst performer, down 1.6 per cent to $2.42, while Kiwi Property Group fell 1.4 per cent to $1.37.


Outside the benchmark index, Cavalier jumped 13 per cent to 62c after the carpet maker forecast annual profit of $3.7m to $4m, from a year-earlier loss, driven by improved margins following the carpetmaker's restructuring and the benefits of more favourable wool prices.

"It was an upgrade in very low numbers," Ward said. "But it has gone from a loss to a profit company so that's not a bad thing."