Thursday 24th February 2011
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The New Zealand sharemarket fell in early trading, after equity markets around the world slumped as investors worried about the impact of higher oil prices due to violent unrest in Libya.
Around 10.15am the benchmark NZX-50 index was down 4.79 points to 3367.28, after gaining 13.4 points yesterday.
Nuplex (NZX: NPX ) lost 13c to $3.46 after reporting a 10% fall in half year net profit to $31.1 million, with sales up 6.5% to $761.5 million.
Port of Tauranga (NZX: POT ) gained 7c to $7.80 as its half year net profit rose 234 to $28.4 million as trade volumes lifted 18%.
Air New Zealand (NZX: AIR ) was down 2c to $1.32 after reporting half year operating revenue up 9% to $2.2 billion, and Auckland Airport (NZX: AIA ), which reported a 14% rise in half year underlying earnings, gained 2c to $2.26.
Contact Energy (NZX: CEN ) lost 4c to $6.16, Sky City (NZX: SKC ) was down 2c to $3.29, and Telecom (NZX: TEL ) dropped 2c to $2.14, while OceanaGold (NZX: OGC ) gained 10c to $3.70, Xero (NZX: XRO ) lifted 9c to $2.63 on low volume, and Sky TV (NZX: SKT ) was up 2c to $5.38.
In the US, stocks closed lower for a second straight session as Libya's violence sent oil prices up briefly to $US100 a barrel and tech shares sank, adding credence to calls for a market correction.
Based on preliminary data, the Dow Jones industrial average was down 0.9% to end unofficially at 12,105.78, the Standard & Poor's 500 Index was down 0.6% at 1307.41, and the Nasdaq Composite Index was down 1.2% at 2722.99.
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