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MARKET CLOSE: NZX 50 charts record highs, led by Ryman, F&P Healthcare; Pushpay falls

Friday 11th May 2018

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New Zealand's benchmark stock index rose to a fresh record, led by retirement village operator Ryman Healthcare and Fisher & Paykel Healthcare Corp, while Pushpay.

The S&P/NZX 50 Index gained 28.97 points, or 0.5 percent, to 8,676.69. Within the index, 22 stocks rose, 16 fell and 12 were unchanged. Turnover was $208.7 million.

"The market hasn't had a bad day on a reasonably positive lead from the US," said Grant Davies, investment adviser at Hamilton Hindin Greene. "The interest rate indications that it is unlikely to change any time soon has helped keep the market going."

Davies said retirement village operators, which led the index higher today, have gained on positivity about property prices. "To a certain extent those companies are a leverage play on property."

Ryman was the best performer, up 2.7 percent to $11.35, while Arvida Group rose 1.7 percent to $1.23 and Metlifecare gained 1.5 percent to $6.04.

F&P Healthcare gained 1.9 percent to $12.99, Auckland International Airport rose 1.7 percent to $6.66, and Australia & New Zealand Banking Group gained 0.9 percent to $30.52.

Pushpay Holdings was the worst performer, down 2.8 percent to $4.16. Trustpower dropped 1.2 percent to $5.85 and Synlait Milk fell 1 percent to $10.05.

CBL Corp remained suspended from trading at $3.17. The firm's voluntary administrators have recommended the company be placed into liquidation, enabling the liquidator to further investigations into the events leading up to the group’s various insolvency procedures. A creditors' watershed meeting will be held next week.

Auckland-based CBL appointed KordaMentha voluntary administrators on March 2 after the Reserve Bank sought an interim liquidation of its New Zealand supervised arm and the Central Bank of Ireland made a similar move against the insurer's European division.

Outside the benchmark index, GeoOp dropped 9.3 percent, or 2.5 cents, to 24.5 cents. It plans to raise up to $4 million in a share placement and rights issue followed by a redemption or conversion of $3 million in outstanding convertible notes and loans to strengthen its balance sheet.

"They're taking advantage of the recent share price uptick to do a capital raising, it's not a widely held stock, but for those that are involved the strength in the balance sheet will be positive," Davies said. 

Warehouse Group gained 0.5 percent to $2.04. Its third-quarter sales advanced 2.6 percent as its Noel Leeming appliance and technology chain outperformed its other outlets. Sales lifted to $701.2 million in the quarter ended April 29, from $683.5 million a year earlier.

Smiths City was unchanged at 44 cents. The retailer has been ordered to pay staff for their attendance at 'voluntary' sales meetings over the past six years. The decision comes a month after Smiths City issued a profit warning, saying a write-down in the value of several unprofitable stores will push it into the red this year as its Auckland stores struggle to gain traction with customers unfamiliar with the brand. 


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