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Stocks to watch: Air NZ, Allied, FBU, NZO

Stocks to watch: Air NZ, Allied, FBU, NZO

Dec. 30 (BusinessWire) – The following stocks may be active on the New Zealand exchange after developments since the close of trading yesterday. All prices are in New Zealand dollars unless specified.

Themes of the day: The kiwi dollar strengthened back over 72 U.S. cents. BioVittoria yesterday became the third IPO in two months to fail, underlining weak sentiment for shares. Stocks edged lower on Wall Street.

Air New Zealand (AIR): The national carrier will face competition from the New Zealand arm of cut-price airline Virgin Blue on its Auckland-to-Cairns route from March next year. Pacific Blue will offer twice-weekly flights on the line which boasts approximately 30,000 New Zealand visitors every year. Shares in Air NZ climbed 1.7% to $1.20 in trading yesterday and have surged 23% this year.

Allied Farmers (ALF): Buyers had been active in the stock since the company boosted shares on issue to more than 1.9 billion from 37.7 million with the purchase of Hanover Finance assets the transaction, says Hamilton Hindin Greene director Grant Williamson. Still, “we’ve yet to see sellers come out in volume” and the shares may drift back down to 10 cents, he said. The shares fell 5% to 11 cents yesterday.

Fisher & Paykel Healthcare (FPH): The New Zealand dollar rose above 72 U.S. cents and has climbed 24% this year, reflecting a weakening U.S. dollar. F&P Healthcare gets almost 80% of its revenue in U.S. dollars and a strong kiwi erodes the amount it can bring home. The shares were unchanged at $3.40 yesterday.

Fletcher Building Ltd. (FBU): Funds associated with AXA Group trimmed their holdings in the nation’s biggest construction company to 5.19% from 6.23%, according to a filing to the NZX yesterday. The shares were unchanged at $8.

New Zealand Oil & Gas (NZO): Crude oil traded near US$79 a barrel in New York amid reports of civil unrest in Iran. Crude is heading for its biggest annual advance in a decade, almost 80%. NZOG shares were unchanged at $1.66 yesterday.

PGG Wrightson (PGW): The nation’s largest rural services company yesterday announced the appointment of three new directors - Alan Lai, chairman of 20% holder Agria Corp., and Xie Tao, Agria’s CEO. The company also named George Gould as a director, representing Pyne Gould Corp. In addition, a new sub-committee chaired by Selwyn Cushing is to consider the future composition of the board and the role of independent chairman, it said. The shares were unchanged at 58 cents yesterday.


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