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MARKET CLOSE: NZ shares fall

MARKET CLOSE: NZ shares fall; Contact, Trustpower give up gains

June 23 (BusinessDesk) - New Zealand shares dipped, with Contact Energy and Trustpower falling, while CBL Corp and Restaurant Brands rose.

The S&P/NZX 50 Index fell 10.05 points, or 0.1 percent, to 7,553.64. Within the index, 22 stocks fell, 19 rose and 9 were unchanged. Turnover was $125 million.

"It's been quiet and uneventful on the markets all week long," said Grant Williamson, investment advisor at Hamilton Hindin Greene. "The index is pretty much unchanged from the start of the week to the end. There have been no real leads from offshore, Australia is flat. We haven't had any reason to push the market up or down." The index closed last Friday at 7,552.75.

Electricity providers "have had a very good week with the exception of today where they've given back those weekly gains," Williamson said.

"Obviously the hydro lakes and rain could be playing a part, there was talk they were getting pretty low and the producers probably benefiting, but a bit of rain could turn that around. There's been a bit of profit taking in those stocks today."

Contact Energy led the index lower, down 1.9 percent to $5.19. It had gained 3.5 percent from $5.11 in the week before today. Trustpower dropped 1.5 percent to $5.40, while Genesis Energy was unchanged at $2.48.

Vector gained 0.3 percent to $3.27. The company beat rivals to supply Australia's Territory Generation with battery storage technology in a multi-million deal for the New Zealand firm. While Vector currently has smart meters in Australia, the Territory Generation contract is its first battery storage foray across the Tasman.

CBL Corp was the best performer, gaining 2.4 percent to $3.39, while Infratil advanced 1.7 percent to $2.98 and Kathmandu Holdings rose 1.5 percent to $2.

Restaurant Brands New Zealand rose 0.3 percent to $5.98. The fast-food retailer is forecasting sales above $700 million in the 2018 financial year as it reaps gains from its expansion into Australia and Hawaii. Before today's annual meeting in Auckland, the company announced plans to dual-list on the Australian Securities Exchange by the end of September.

Chief executive Russel Creedy said the company has "fundamentally changed" and is now "a truly international one", leading to its management reorganisation into three geographic reporting divisions.

(BusinessDesk)

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