The New Zealand stock market had one of its lightest trading days of this eventful year, posting a slight gain, awaiting the next move in interest rates.
The S&P/NZX 50 index left a
the morning low at 11,530.01 and finished ahead by 38.44 points or 0.33% at 11,570.43.
There were only 18.85 million trades in stocks worth $68.8 million, with 79 winners and 50 decliners across the entire market.
Dan Stratful, investment adviser at Forsyth Barr, said the market has seen good economic data lately, but that’s what it’s struggling with — good news leads to further interest rate hikes.
“I don’t know what the trend is, and it will only be good for the market when there is a clear indication that inflation is slowing down,” he said.
The US Federal Reserve is expected to raise its official target range this week by another 75 basis points to 3-3.25%.
Some investors are wary of a 1% hike in interest rates, while others are watching corporate earnings forecasts ahead of the start of the next reporting season next month.
KMD Brands (formerly Kathmandu), gaining 3c or 3% to $1.03, provided the main interest for the local market as it reported a 40% decline in net profit to $36.82m on record revenue of $979.8 million, up 6.2%, for the year to end July. Kathmandu stores recorded their highest sales in the fourth quarter.
KMD, which also owns Rip Curl and Oboz Footwear, pays a final dividend of 3c per share on November 25. The retailer told the market that the group’s sales in August were 44% higher than the same month last year and 10% higher. pre-Covid levels in August 2019.
Stratful said the last financial year had been very disruptive for KMD with production at Vietnamese factories affected by Covid lockdowns. But the company has provided a rather positive outlook for the current year and continues the commercial momentum of the last second half. KMD should show a markedly improved financial result for the current year.
Fellow retailers Briscoe Group was down 4c at $5.438, The Warehouse group fell 13c or 3.67% to $3.41; and Hallenstein-Glasson fell 3c to $5.27.
Moving logistics gained 4c or 3.31% at $1.25 after announcing to the market that it was pulling out of an $11.2m deal to buy a private bulk shipping company Fluidex. Move said the sellers wanted to change some business terms of the transaction and that was not acceptable.
Sparkwhich went ex-dividend last week, recouped 13.5c or 2.68% to $5.165 on trade worth $10.09m; Chorus increased by 7c to $7.60; Auckland International Airport won 8c at $7.74; Fletcher Building raised 10c or 1.9% to $5.36; and a2 Milk climbed 17c or 2.76% to $6.32.
The main banks ANZ increased by 38c to $26.90, and Westpac was up 45c or 1.85% at $24.75. In the energy sector, Mercury increased by 7c to $6.07, and Meridian was down 4c at $5.08.
In the port sector, Marsden Maritime Holdings was up 7c at $6.35; Port of Tauranga won 3c at $6.55; and Napier Harbor was down 9c or 2.96% at $2.95.
The retirement village sector was mixed. Sunset Group increased by 4c to $10.89; Ryman Health was down 12c at $8.93; Arvida decreased 4c or 2.7% to $1.44; and Oceania Health fell 2c or 2.13% to 92c.
The largest producer of kiwifruit in the country Seeka was up 15c or 3.86% at $4.04.
Other winners were Vulcan Steelwhich went ex-dividend, rising 14.5c or 1.81% to $8.17; Gentrack pick up 7c or 5.11 percent to $1.44; Third age health improving 7c or 3.48 percent to $2.08; and NZ King Salmon Investments increasing 1c or 4.55 per cent to 23c.
Freight lanesdown 22c or 2.08% at $10.35, and Main freightdown 50 cents to $71, continued to feel the impact — or shock in the minds of some U.S. investors — of the earnings downgrade at global shipping firm FedEx.
Real estate company stride was down 5c or 2.75% at $1.77, and Investor fell 3c or 1.86% to $1.58.
sky tv shed 7c or 3.07% at $2.21; AFT Pharmaceuticals fell 13c or 3.74% to $3.35; T&G Global was down 7c or 2.59% at $2.63; Rakon fell 6c or 4.72% to $1.21; Foley Wines throw 3c or 2.11% to $1.39; and Plexure Group fell 3c or 7.5% to 37c.