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MARKET CLOSE: NZ shares up; Comvita and Kathmandu rally while Fisher & Paykel drops

Thursday 28th June 2018

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New Zealand shares rose, led higher by Comvita and Kathmandu Holdings, while Fisher and Paykel Healthcare Corp and Trade Me Group fell.

The S&P/NZX50 Index gained 2.27 points, or 0.03 percent, to 8,998.79. Within the index, 32 stocks rose, 12 fell and six were unchanged. Turnover was $142.8 million.

"The market has again shrugged off quite a weak lead from offshore markets, not paying a great deal of attention as support continues for a number of high-growth names," said Matt Goodson, managing director at Salt Funds Management. 

Comvita led the index, up 3.2 percent to $5.85.

Kathmandu Holdings rose 2.8 percent to $2.96. The stock has risen 18.4 percent since Monday, when it said it expects to increase profit this year on higher sales and better margins. It's forecasting net profit of $48 million to $52 million in the year ending July 31, from $38 million last year. 

"It has a very high dependence on three annual major sales, which can make it difficult for investors to forecast, but this year they really do seem to have the house well and truly in order," Goodson said. "It has occurred against a retail backdrop that hasn't been hugely easy. It is a brand owner as well as a retailer, but they've certainly managed to defy general weakness."

Sky Network Television gained 2.8 percent to $2.60, Fonterra Shareholders Fund rose 2.5 percent to $5.35, and Port of Tauranga was up 2.4 percent to $5.20.

Z Energy gained 0.3 percent to $7.51. After the market closed yesterday, it said its customer database for the Z card online was breached due to a security flaw and has advised affected customers and the Privacy Commissioner of the failing.

Fisher and Paykel Healthcare was the worst performer, down 2.4 percent to $14.90. Shares in FPH, which is New Zealand's biggest listed healthcare company, have risen 11.6 percent since the company announced its earnings at the end of May. In that result, it delivered annual profit of $190.2 million, at the top end of its forecast range, and forecast 2019 profit at $210 million.

"It has received quite extraordinary offshore buying interest following what was a bit of a soft result, so somewhat surprising that it has rallied a couple of dollars since that result despite some modest earnings downgrades on it," Goodson said. 

Trade Me dropped 1.7 percent to $4.72, Air New Zealand fell 1.4 percent to $3.175, and Tourism Holdings declined 1.2 percent to $6.72.


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