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Mainfreight shares power ahead as market drops

Tuesday 8th March 2011

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Mainfreight shares rose further in early trade, after the company announced yesterday it had agreed to buy Netherlands-based transport and logistics firm Wim Bosman Group, despite broad weakness in the New Zealand sharemarket.

After ending up 47c yesterday, Mainfreight (NZX: MFT ) put on another 16c in the first few minutes after the market opened today to a new high $8.75.

Despite that highlight, the benchmark NZX-50 index was down 6.36 points to 3423.7 around 10.15am, having gained 11.9 points yesterday.

Restaurant Brands (NZX: RBD ) fell 6c to $2.35 after reporting its sales fell 1.8% from a year earlier in the fourth quarter.

Fletcher Building (NZX: FBU ) dropped 6c to $8.78 early, Sky City (NZX: SKC ) fell 4c to $3.44, Cavalier Corp (NZX: CAV ) lost 2c to $3.32, Telecom (NZX: TEL ) dropped 2c to $2.13, and Steel & Tube (NZX: STU ) was down 2c to $2.64.

Port of Tauranga (NZX: POT ) gained 3c to $7.95, Abano Healthcare (NZX: ABA ) lifted 2c to $4.60, and Contact Energy (NZX: CEN ) edged up 1c to $6.10.

In the US, stocks ended lower as higher oil prices weighed on the market.

Oil hit a two-year high early in the day after forces loyal to Libyan leader Moammar Gadhafi launched airstrikes against opposition fighters at an oil port.

A sustained rise in the price of oil could hurt the economic recovery by raising transportation costs.

Based on preliminary data, the Dow Jones industrial average fell 0.7% to close at 12,090, the Standard & Poor's 500 index fell 0.8% to 1310, and the Nasdaq fell 1.4% to 2745.



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