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Stocks to watch: New Zealand equity preview

Monday 1st September 2008

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The following stocks may be active on the New Zealand exchange after developments since the close of trading yesterday.

Themes of the day: Wall Street is closed tonight for the Labor Day holiday, which is likely to reduce offshore order flows into the New Zealand market. All three benchmark U.S. indexes declined on Friday after government figures showed consumer purchases in July slowed to one-third their pace in June while prices surged the most in 17 years.

Colonial Motor Co. (CMO): the diversified group on Friday reported full-year profit rose 11% to NZ$7.2 million on sales of heavy trucks and tractors and an accounting change to the way it recognizes sales of new vehicles to lease companies. The shares traded unchanged at NZ$3.15 on Friday and have dropped 12% this year.

Dominion Finance (DFH): The finance company today said its auditors plan to put a disclaimer on its financial statements, reflecting uncertainty over the outcome of its plan for a moratorium on payments to investors and recapitalization of the business. The shares have slumped almost 100% this year and traded Friday at 2.5 cents.

New Zealand Experience (NZE): the manager of the Rainbow's End theme park on Friday said annual profit fell to NZ$1 million from NZ$1.3 million, which exceeded its own target. Sales rose 1.4% after it raised admission charges.

Northland Port Corp. (NTH): the port company today posted a 7.7% increase in full-year profit, reflecting a one-time gain from the sale of its stake in marina and waterway joint venture Marsden Cove. The company will pay special dividend of 12 cents a share after the settlement of Sea-Tow. The shares were unchanged at NZ$2.84 on Friday and have fallen 19% this year.

Tag Pacific (TPC): The Australian company, whose stock also trades on the NZX, posted a full-year loss of A$5.1 million as revenue rose 5% to A$88 million. Earnings were hurt by a drop in the share price of its listed investments, it said in a statement. The shares have fallen 30% on the NZX this year and last traded at 24 cents.

By Jonathan Underhill



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