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Good start for NZ sharemarket


Tuesday 30th August 2011

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The New Zealand sharemarket started the day well, following a rise in global stocks as a merger between two big Greek banks provided a rare bit of encouraging news out of debt-stricken Europe.

Around 10.20am the benchmark NZX-50 index was up 20.84 points, or 0.6 percent, to 3326.84, after yesterday gaining 10.4 points.

Abano Healthcare lifted 10c to 436, Xero was up 7c to 275, Nuplex added 6c to 279, Mainfreight gained 6c to 985, Vector gained 5c to 246, Sky City lifted 5c to 345, and Cavalier Corp added 5c to 335.

Among key stocks Fletcher Building added 6c to 776, Telecom edged up 1c to 277.5, and Contact Energy was unchanged on 520.

Port of Tauranga was up 2c to 972, on top of the 40c gain it made yesterday after it said the Mediterranean Shipping Co will start a new service with Tauranga as its only port call in this country. This and other services will boost container volumes.

In the US, stocks soared more than 2 percent in a broad rally, boosted by the Greek bank merger and a rebound in consumer spending calmed fears of a new US recession.

Financial stocks were the top gainers after Greek banks Alpha and EFG Eurobank sealed a merger with help from Qatar, shoring up a sector battered by the euro zone's debt crisis.

Insurers also rose sharply as property damage from Hurricane Irene was less than feared, according to early estimates.

The Dow Jones industrial average was up 2.3 percent at 11,539.25, the Standard & Poor's 500 Index was up 2.8 percent at 1210.08, and the Nasdaq Composite Index was up 3.3 percent at 2562.11.

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