MARKET CLOSE: NZ shares fall on Meridian IPO, US impasse
MARKET CLOSE: NZ shares fall on Meridian IPO, US impasse; Z Energy at post-float high
Oct. 4 (BusinessDesk) – New Zealand shares fell in subdued trading, paced by Pumpkin Patch, Auckland International Airport and Kathmandu Holdings as investors freed up funds for the Meridian Energy sale and the US budget shutdown sapped risk appetite. Z Energy rose to a post-float high.
The NZX 50 Index fell 10.831 points, or 0.2 percent, to 4759.384. Within the index, 17 stocks fell, 22 rose and 11 were unchanged. Turnover was $91.5 million.
The retail component of the government’s sale of 49 percent of Meridian closes on Oct. 18 while the institutional offer and bookbuild starts Oct. 21. Listing of the instalment receipts is expected to be on Oct. 29. Meantime, stocks generally weakened across Asia on concerns about the US impasse and looming deadline to raise the debt ceiling.
“The market is really just treading water waiting for resolution to the Washington issue,” said Grant Williamson, a director at Hamilton Hindin Greene. “When it is resolved we will see some buying come back into this market.”
Still, there’s likely to be some selling pressure, “particularly when institutions start bidding on Meridian, which could put a bit of a lid on the market,” he said.
Pumpkin Patch, the children’s clothing retailer, fell 3.8 percent to $1.01, and outdoor equipment chain Kathmandu declined 1.4 percent to $3.55.
Auckland International Airport fell 1.8 percent to $3.30. Telecom, which today said it had registered to bid for 700 Megahertz spectrum it needs to extend its 4G network, fell 0.7 percent to $2.305. Fletcher Building declined 0.6 percent to $9.46.
NZ Oil & Gas, which yesterday announced it had agreed to buy some of Mitsui’s interest in the Tui oil field, fell 1.3 percent to 79 cents.
Z Energy, which went public in August, rose 0.5 percent to $3.99, matching its post-float high.
“There’s still very good demand for the stock,” Williamson said.
Port of Tauranga gained 2.2 percent to $13.90 after an investor presentation and Sky Network Television rose about 2 percent to $6.18.