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NZX cash trading falls in first half

NZX cash trading falls in first half, Kiwisaver funds rise

By Sophie Boot

July 27 (BusinessDesk) - NZX saw cash trading drop in the first half of the year, with fewer initial public offerings but more funds under management.

Total trades in the six months to June 30 were flat at 923,078, while total value traded dropped 12.7 percent to $19.8 billion, with daily average value traded dropping 12.7 percent to $161 million. The NZX50 Index was at 7,611 as of June 30, up 10.3 percent on the year.

Total equity securities fell 4.7 percent to 164 in the first half, with capital raised from initial public offerings and compliance listings down 42.9 percent to $480 million. Listed debt securities rose 18.8 percent to 114, though new debt listings dropped 51.1 percent to $1.54 billion.

Funds services continued to gain, with Kiwisaver funds under management up 23 percent to $661 million, while total Smartshares funds rose 18 percent to $1.9 billion. Subscriptions for NZX's agri data products rose 17 percent to 2,663 in the first half.

NZX had nine ongoing investigations into issuers at the end of the first half, compared to 12 a year earlier. While it doesn't routinely disclose the companies it is investigating, the regulator last week confirmed it is looking into Fletcher Building's additional profit warning for the year ended June 30 and the departure of chief executive and managing director Mark Adamson.

In April, the stock market operator appointed Mark Peterson as its chief executive and tasked him with growing the business to compete more effectively on the domestic and international fronts. Peterson had been acting CEO since Tim Bennett departed at the end of last year, and was previously NZX's head of markets. Chief financial officer Bevan Miller announced yesterday he will leave the market operator in October to take up the same role at Cooperative Bank.

NZX has forecast earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortisation of between $27 million and $30 million in calendar 2017, depending on the level of initial public offerings, secondary capital raisings, and trading and clearing volumes across its various markets.That would be up from $22.5 million last year. It is due to announce its earnings on August 15.

The shares last traded at $1.16, and have gained 10.5 percent so far this year.



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