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Stocks to watch: ALF, MFT, NZO, TEL, THL

Stocks to watch: ALF, MFT, NZO, TEL, THL

Nov. 19 (BusinessDesk) – The following stocks may be active on the New Zealand exchange after developments since the close of trading. All prices are in New Zealand dollars unless specified.

Themes of the day: Shares rallied in the U.S. and Europe on optimism Ireland will receive financial aid from the EU and the International Monetary Fund and General Motors rose 3.8% on its return to trading in the U.S. Reserve Bank Governor Alan Bollard said in a speech today that New Zealand’s economic rebalancing is “progressing, but very slowly.”

Allied Farmers Ltd. (ALF): The company’s Matarangi Beach Estates was put in receivership after it turned down the chance to sell the assets back to Hanover Finance principles Mark Hotchin and Eric Watson at a discount. HSBC cancelled the beachfront development company’s $19 million term loan facility after Allied refused to provide support for the facility that has been in default since last December. HSBC has now appointed KordaMentha as receiver. The stock fell 5% to 1.9 cents yesterday.

Mainfreight Ltd. (MFT): The trucking company yesterday reported first-half profit rose 52% to $16.5 million, on sales growth of 20%. Offshore sales now account for 70% of Mainfreight’s revenue, it said. The shares fell 1.4% to $7.30 yesterday.

New Zealand Oil & Gas (NZO): Crude oil had the biggest gain in two weeks as concerns eased about Ireland’s debt and U.S. figures showed crude oil supplies fell. Crude oil for December delivery climbed 1.8% to US$81.85 a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange.

Telecom Corp. (TEL): The phone company is rated a ‘hold’ by McDouall Stuart, according to the ShareChat website. The brokerage said the company’s market share will inevitably decline as regulation forces increased competition. Protecting market share in mobile and broadband, inevitably, “will involve lower pricing and the company will have to take significant costs out just to maintain profitability.” The shares rose 3 cents to $2.14 yesterday.

Tourism Holdings Ltd. (THL): The camper van rental company told shareholders that earnings growth would be difficult with the backpacker market softening due to the strong New Zealand and Australian currencies. The shares fell 8% yesterday to 69 cents.


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