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MARKET CLOSE: Shares drift as Metroglass IPO lines up

New Zealand shares fell marginally on low volumes as local holidays and the Friday US Independence Day closure kept investors on the sidelines, albeit domestically focused specialty glass provider Metro Performance Glass issued the latest in a string of initial public offer prospectuses.

The NZX 50 Index fell 2.545 points, or 0.04 percent, to 5186.360. Within the index, 19 stocks fell, 19 were unchanged, and 12 rose. Turnover reflected the quiet day, at $83.4 million on trading of just 23.3 million shares.

"It's the school holidays," said Brian Gaynor, a principal at Milford Asset Management, who declined to give a view on the quality of the Metroglass float.

Metroglass, which has more than half the New Zealand glass processing market, will raise $244.2 million in an initial public offer, almost all of which will go to its current owners who have spent $40 million since taking control.

"The prospectus forecasts show they are going from eight (million dollars), to 12, to 21 million," Gaynor said. "There are some pretty optimistic forecasts compared to what they did in the past. Private equity are selling their shares. People can come to their own conclusions."

Vista Entertainment Group also posted a several hundred page prospectus on its website, after announcing a $100.3 million IPO, of which $40 million will be new capital to pursue commercial opportunities.

Among market leaders, the biggest fall for the day was 2.8 percent by Mainfreight, to $14.43, followed by outdoor clothing firm Kathmandu, down 1.9 percent to $3.19, and retirement village operator Summerset at $3.37, down 1.75 percent. Telecom Corp fell 0.9 percent to $2.67 while Fletcher Building gained 1 percent to $9.06.

Chorus rose 0.6 percent to $1.75 after the Commerce Commission sought submissions on the company's proposed services that would operate outside regulation.

Online auction site Trade Me was the biggest gainer on the day, up 1.7 percent to $3.65.

(BusinessDesk)

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