MARKET WRAP: NZ shares flat on mixed trading

The market's recent strong performers Kathmandu and A2 Milk slipped into the red.
Hamilton Hindin Greene investment adviser Grant Davies.
Hamilton Hindin Greene investment adviser Grant Davies says Steel & Tube was “probably due” a good trading day.

NZ shares slipped slightly today on light trading volumes and lack of any corporate news.

The S&P NZX 50 index was down 1.42 points to 8,978.89, on turnover of just $96 million.

“The stocks that are down the most have had a pretty good run of late. Fletcher is up 20% in the last quarter, as is Kathmandu," Hamilton Hindin Greene investment adviser Grant Davies says.

"Of course, A2 and Synlait both have had stellar years to date, although under a little bit more pressure lately,” 

A2 Milk shares fell 1.68% to $11.10 and Synlait fell 1.63% to $10.88, ahead of tonight’s latest GlobalDairyTrade auction.

At the last auction traded dairy products slumped 5%– the biggest drop this year. Benchmark whole milk powder, which made up half the total volume sold, dropped 7.3% to $US2905/t.

Kathmandu shares fell 2.85% to $3.07 after a strong surge on the back of a profit upgrade last month.

Fletcher Building shares fell 2.13% to $6.90. On Monday the company appointed a new chief executive to its construction division, Peter Reidy, who is KiwiRail’s chief executive, and also moved current chief executive, Michelle Kernahan, to head the building products division.

Steel & Tube shares gained 1.36% to $1.49. Mr Davies says the company was “probably due” a good trading day.

The stock took a tumble after last month’s announcement it expects impairments of up to $54m.

PGG Wrightson shares gained 3.03% to 68c. Last month the company reported it expects earnings for the 2018 financial year to meet guidance of $65 to $70 million; an increase on 2017’s $64.5 million. Multinational seed specialist Barenbrug Group also recently confirmed its interest in PGG Wrightson’s seed unit.

Trustpower had an investor day today, wherein it confirmed that its earlier FY19 EBITDAF market guidance of between $205 million and $225 million remains unchanged. That was enough to keep investors satisfied as Trustpower shares gained 2c to $5.60.

NZ Refining shares fell 1.59% to $2.48 after releasing its throughput and margin report, showing processing fee income for the May/June period was negative $2.8 million due to the impact of a hydrocracker shutdown. Last month the company announced it expects to take a $40m hit on net profit as a result of maintenance costs on the unit, up from previous estimates of $30m.

“The throughput and margin report that came out this morning was fairly weak as expected, and the market [was] selling off slightly although it’s been around the $2.50 mark for some time.”

Mr Davies says Summerset Group led the aged-care sector up. Its shares rose 1.18% to $7.69.

“There’s quite a few in that sector which have done reasonably well. Arvita and Oceania were both up today.”

Oceania Healthcare shares gained earlier in the day but closed unchanged at $1.11. The company will release its annual report on July 26.

Arvita Group shares gained 1c to $1.30.

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