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Stocks to watch: Telecom and Nuplex at centre of attention

Friday 10th September 2010

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Telecom and decisions about ultra-fast broadband dominated the market yesterday and are likely to be one of the themes today. Also Nuplex is in the spotlight after it said it may relocate to Australia.

Telecom (NZX: TEL ): The phone company dropped 5.2% to $2.02 yesterday after Crown Fibre Holdings prioritised three regional deals in its short list for the government funded roll-out of an ultra-fast broadband network, dousing hopes for a Telecom-led national approach. 

AMP NZ Office Trust (NZX: APT ): The company is facing significant vacancies with Westpac moving out of its two Auckland premises in the PricewaterhouseCoopers building and all but half a floor of its Wellington space in the Vodafone building in the year ending June 2012, according to Goldman Sachs JB Were analyst Buffy Gill, quoted on the Daily ShareChat website. Shares were unchanged yesterday at 76 cents. 

Nuplex (NZX: NPX ): The specialty chemicals manufacturer said it was seriously considering relocating to Australia, while keeping its two listings, a move that chairman Rob Aitken said could lead to the stock being rerated. The shares rose 0.6% yesterday to $3.39.

Lyttelton Port (NZX: LPC ): The South Island’s biggest port sustained damage to facilities including its coal terminal and will need to spend some tens of millions over time on repairs. The stock, which is controlled by Christchurch City’s investment company, last traded on September 7 at $2.42. 

Pulse Utilities (NZX: PLU ): The NZX-listed electricity retailer has frozen trading in 464,000 of its ordinary shares, belonging to a subsidiary controlled by two large shareholders pending an independent investigator’s report. The stock last traded on September 3 at 44 cents. 

Warehouse (NZX: WHS ): New Zealand’s largest listed retailer posted a net profit of $83.2 million for the year to August 1, down 2.4% on the previous period. A final dividend of 8.5 cents per share was declared, bringing the total ordinary dividend for the year to 24.0 cents per share, up or 14.3%. Shares fell 0.2% yesterday to $3.69. 

Windflow Technology (NZX: WTL ): The maker of turbines for windfarms yesterday revised up its loss for the year to June 30 to $7.95 million because of costs of remedial work for customer NZ Windfarms. The shares fell 4.4% to $1.10 yesterday. 

Themes of the day: New Zealand has slipped three places from last year to 23rd in the World Economic Forum's Global Competitiveness Report, with this country's business development being particularly weak compared to the other 138 nations in the survey.

Equities in the US gained as a larger-than-expected fall in jobless claims helped underpin a positive outlook for the economic recovery.

Data showing the US trade gap narrowed 14% also bolstered optimism. The Dow Jones Industrial Average gained 0.4%. In New Zealand, terms of trade is due out today for the second quarter. The kiwi dollar traded at 72.43 US cents, up from 72.19 yesterday.

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