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Stocks to watch: AIR, CEN, FPH, KMD, RBD, RIS

Wednesday 21st September 2011

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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: Second-quarter current account figures are due today, with a quarterly gap of $690 million forecast and an annual deficit of $7.98 billion. Travel and migration data for August is also released today. Average prices of dairy products extended their slide for a seventh straight sale at Fonterra Cooperative Group’s latest online auction.

Global markets were mixed as the U.S. Federal Reserve began a two-day policy meeting. The Standard & Poor's 500 Index fell 0.2% to 1,202.09, while Europe's Stoxx 600 Index rose 1.8% to 229.10.

Air New Zealand Ltd. (AIR): The national carrier said it lifted passenger numbers by 2.7% in August as an increase in volumes on domestic and trans-
Tasman routes more than made up for a decline on long-haul routes. The airline carried 1.01 million passengers last month, up from 978,000 in August 2010. The passenger load factor, a measure of capacity utilisation, was unchanged at 81.9%. Revenue passenger kilometers, a barometer of demand, fell 2.8%. AIR shares fell 0.9% yesterday to $1.10.

Contact Energy Ltd. (CEN): The country’s biggest listed electricity company appears to be making some headway in stopping customers leaving its books by offering discounts. According to its operational report the company had 438,500 electricity customers on its books as of the end of August, unchanged from July, while gas customers rose by 500 in the month to 59,500. LPG customers were steady at 59,500. CEN shares rose 3% yesterday to $5.43.

Fisher & Paykel Healthcare (FPH): The breathing mask and respirator manufacturer has delayed a strike at its Highbrook plant in Auckland after it tabled a revised pay offer to workers late last night, according to a Fairfax Media report. The company offered a 3% increase plus a 3.2% increase on wages for a two-year agreement. FPH shares rose 2.7% yesterday to $2.30.

Kathmandu Holdings (KMD): The outdoor clothing and equipment retailer's shares rose 3.8% yesterday to $2.19 ahead of the release of its full year results today. The company is expected to deliver a 36% increase in full-year pre-tax earnings to $65 million on the back of favourable weather on both sides of the Tasman, according to research by Goldman Sachs.

Restaurant Brands NZ Ltd. (RBD): The fast food franchise operator reported a 6.5% decline in second quarter sales to $93.9 million on the weaker retail environment, the impact of the Christchurch earthquakes and continued store closures. Same-store sales were down 4.5%. RBD shares fell 1.8% yesterday to $2.19.

RIS Group (RIS): The Payments system software developer has been suspended from the NZX after missing a second deadline to publish its full year results, a requirement under the NZAX listing rules. RIS shares were last at 1 cent before they were halted.


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