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MARKET CLOSE: NZ shares fall; Ryman drops after holder exits

Tuesday 22nd June 2010

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New Zealand shares fell, marking only the second day of declines in 11 sessions, with Ryman Healthcare Ltd. declining after a shareholder, believed to be Canadian, sold about 6.5% of the resthome and retirement village operator.

The NZ fell 14.1 points, or %, to 3,054.2. Within the index 22 share fell, eight rose and 20 remained unchanged. Turnover was $158.1 million, making it one of the busiest trading days this year, as 32.8 million Ryman shares changed hands.

Ryman (NZX: RYM ) fell 2.4% to $2.07, the lowest since May 7, even after the company announced that it was opening its 24th retirement village, in Tauranga.

“Ryman’s share price was affected by a very large sale of shares in the market today from a Canadian source, most of which went to institutional investors,” said Alan Moore, who helps manage $600 million at of Milford Asset Management. “I think that is a heck of a lot of shares for the market to absorb, and has probably taken away the buying potential in the short term.”

Sky City (NZX: SKC ) rose 0.4% to $2.87 after the market shrugged off news that recent tax changes would result in the company incurring a once-time deferred tax liability adjustment of $60 million and a $2 million increase in annual income tax payments starting in 2011. The announcement was “nothing material,” Moore said.

Telstra (NZX: TLS ) fell 2.4% to $4.05, losing some of its lustre after yesterday’s news that it had signed an agreement to migrate its voice and data traffic onto the Australian government’s broadband network. Telecom (NZX: TEL ) fell 2.1% to $1.90.

“The Telstra share price is down now that the excitement is over for them,” Moore said. “Anyone who though that this was going to have an impact on Telecom’s share price is starting to realise that it is a different ball game over here.”

Shares in ANZ (NZX: ANZ ) were unchanged at $29.17 on the NZX after the announcement that it had reached a $45 million settlement with the Commerce Commission for aggressively over promoting ING’s diversified yield and regular income finds. This comes on top of the $500 million already available to investors from its compensation offer last year.

“The ANZ deal is not big in the grand scheme of things,” Moore said. “They’ve had to make a lot worse write-down provisions than that, but the moral obligation is there, and just to clear things up once and for all and get on.”

Among other stocks, Guinness Peat Group (NZX: GPG ) sank 3.2% to 61 cents, the biggest decline on the index today. Cavalier (NZX: CAV ), the carpet maker, fell 2.8% to $2.43.

PGG Wrightson (NZX: PGW ) was the biggest gainer, rising 1.9% to 55 cents.

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