MARKET CLOSE: Vista recovers in heavy day of trading
By Victoria Young
Aug. 30 (BusinessDesk) - New Zealand shares rose in heavy trading, led by Vista Group International which recovered some of yesterday’s sharp sell-off.
The S&P/NZX 50 Index climbed 177.13 points, or 1.6 percent, to 10,757.20. Within the index, 37 stocks rose, three fell, and 10 were unchanged. Turnover was $224.3 million with many stocks trading over a million shares including Sky Network Television, Vista, Spark New Zealand, Goodman Property Group and Infratil.
Stocks across Asia followed Wall Street higher with investors more upbeat when Chinese authorities took a more conciliatory stance to US President Donald Trump's latest round of import tariffs. Hong Kong's Hang Seng was up 0.6 percent in afternoon trading, South Korea's Kospi 200 Index rose 1.8 percent, and Australia's S&P/ASX 200 Index climbed 1.4 percent.
“Volatility is going to continue, but as we run into the US election we think Trump is going to calm himself down, in particular, his rhetoric around trade,” said Peter McIntyre, an investment adviser at Craigs Investment Partners.
“As soon as that gets resolved then that's going to solve one problem, but we still have Brexit and a slowing European economy.”
Vista led the market higher as it recovered from a seven-month low, rising 4.9 percent to $4.04 on a volume of 4.7 million shares, about 14 times its 90-day average of 336,000. The stock slumped 29 percent yesterday when it trimmed its outlook for revenue growth.
The cinema software firm had scaled back revenue projections to 10-12 percent, having lifted revenue in the past five years by more than 20 percent each year. “Investors are probably looking to buy what has been a good value asset,” McIntyre said.
Sky TV was the volume leader as 5.4 million shares changed hands. The share price was unchanged at $1.10.
“They’ve given a pretty clear signal to the market that they’ll reinvest in new technology,” McIntyre said.
Chorus rose 0.7 percent to $5.04 on an unusually large volume of 4.7 million shares and Spark was up 1.1 percent at $4.42 on a volume of 3.6 million. A2 Milk rose 3.1 percent to $14.45 on a volume of 1.2 million shares.
Of other stocks trading on volumes of more than a million shares, Precinct Properties New Zealand increased 0.8 percent to $1.866, Kiwi Property Group rose 1.2 percent to $1.63, Auckland International Airport was up 1.7 percent at $9.62, Infratil was unchanged at $4.55, Goodman Property rose 1.2 percent to $2.18, Argosy Property advanced 1.4 percent to $1.465, and Skellerup was unchanged at $2.23.
McIntyre noted that exporters were benefiting from the currency at four-year lows. Scales Corp rose 3 percent to $4.75 on a volume of 443,000, more than four times its 95,000 average, while Fonterra Shareholders Fund units were up 2.5 at $3.31.
Fletcher Building rose 2.8 percent to $4.44 on a volume of 1.6 million shares, as resource consents data supported the construction sector. Stats NZ said new residential building permits remain at 45 year-highs and economists are picking more activity off cheaper finance in the low-interest-rate environment.
Retirement operators Summerset Group and Ryman Healthcare also gained, with shares of Summerset rising by 3.8 percent to $6.04 and Ryman lifting by 3.8 percent to $13.02.
With the domestic reporting season drawing to a close, McIntyre said “it was okay without being outstanding.”
“Gentailers are benefiting from better wholesale market prices although some companies like Freightways are seeing pressure around margins.”
Genesis Energy rose 2.5 percent to $3.44 on a volume of 1.6 million shares, Meridian Energy was up 2.1 percent at $4.98 on a volume of 2.1 million, Mercury NZ increased 1.3 percent to $5.185, and Contact Energy advanced 1.1 percent to $8.38 on a volume of 1.1 million. Freightways increased 0.8 percent to $7.97.
Arvida Group posted the day's biggest decline, down 0.7 percent at $1.34 on a volume of 822,000, more than its 601,000 average.