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Stocks to watch: New Zealand equity preview

Monday 30th June 2008

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

Themes of the day: U.S. stocks dropped on Friday in New York, sending the Standard & Poor's 500 Index to a three-month low. New Zealand stocks reached a two-year low Friday. Building consents for May are due today after GDP figures last week showed a housing slump contributed to a contraction in the economy in the first quarter. Crude oil rose to a new record US$142.99 a barrel Friday in New York and Deutsche Bank predicts the price will rise to US$150, according to Reuters.

OceanaGold Corp. (OGC): Gold rose to a month-high on Friday in New York as the soaring price of oil spurred demand for the metal as a hedge against inflation.

New Zealand Refining (NZR): Crude oil rose to a new record US$142.99 a barrel on Friday in New York.

Telecom Corp (TEL): Vodafone Group Plc, Telecom's biggest mobile phone rival, today begins Local Zone, targeting Telecom customers who have a second phone line into their homes. Vodafone's strategy marks 'a full-scale assault' on Telecom, the New Zealand Herald reported.

Warehouse Group (WHS): New Zealand's biggest discount chain led a slump in retail stocks Friday after cutting its profit forecast. After GDP shrank in the first quarter "we maintain that the worst is yet to come and that the central bank will be forced to act, despite short-term inflation pressure," Danica Hampton, currency strategist at Bank of New Zealand, said in a note today.

Windflow Technology (WTL): State-owned power generator Mighty River Power agreed to buy a 19.95% cornerstone stake in the Christchurch-based technology company. Mighty River also signed a turnkey agreement for Windflow to build its first wind farm near Wellington using Windflow 500 turbines.

By Jonathan Underhill

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