NZ sharemarket climbs to four-year high
Fri, 14 Sep 2012 9:31p.m.
By Hannah Lynch
New Zealand shares rose, nudging the NZX 50 to a new four-year high after the Federal Reserve announced further measures to bolster growth in the world's biggest economy.
Paced by the NZX, Trade Me and Fletcher Building, the NZX 50 Index rose 6.3 points, or 0.2 percent, to 3792.34, the highest close since January 2008.
Within the index, 23 stocks rose, 14 fell and 13 were unchanged. Turnover was $108 million.
The Federal Reserve plans to expand its holdings of long-term securities with open-ended purchases of US$40 billion (NZ$47.9 billion) of mortgage debt a month and pledged to keep interest rates at record lows until at least mid-2015. Equity markets across Asia joined a rally in US stocks following the Fed's statement.
"The Fed stimulus and obviously with interest rates staying lower for longer means money is coming out of bank deposits into equities," said Bryon Burke, head dealer at Craigs Investment Partners.
NZX, the stock exchange regulator, rose 2.8 percent to $1.11. Fletcher Building, New Zealand's largest construction company, rose 1.6 percent to $6.80, the highest since late March.
Cavalier, New Zealand's only listed carpet market, gained 1.1 percent to $1.82.
TradeMe rose 1.8 percent to $4.01. On Thursday, NZX said the online auction site will replace Nuplex Industries in the NZX20, an index launched six months ago to encompass the stock exchange's 20 largest and most-liquid companies.
Nuplex Industries, the specialty chemicals maker, rose about 1 percent to $3.20. The stock has gained 38 percent so far this year.
The decline was led by Fisher and Paykel Healthcare, which gets more than 50 percent of its revenue in US dollars. It fell 6.6 percent to $2.11 as the New Zealand dollar rose to a six-month high against the greenback.
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