The New Zealand sharemarket tumbled in the first few minutes of trading, after equities in the United States plunged at the end of last week as fraud charges against Goldman Sachs and disappointing earnings sent investors running for cover.
Fletcher Building shares, which reached a six-month high 856 last Thursday, fell 15c early today to 834, while declines among other market leaders saw Telecom down 2c to 216 and Contact Energy down 2c to 636.
Stocks falling 5c early included Air New Zealand, to 136, Port of Tauranga to 690, Sky City to 320, and The Warehouse to 378. Fisher&Paykel Healthcare fell 4c to 340, Mainfreight dropped 3c to 649 and NZ Oil&Gas lost 3c to 153.
Around 10.15am the benchmark NZX-50 index was down 26.09 points, or 0.79 percent, to 3285.22. On Friday it fell 9.8 points, having reached a 19-month intraday high around 3349 points on Thursday.
Listed industrial property investor Property for Industry slipped 1c to 115 after reporting first quarter rentals were 3.2 percent higher than a year earlier.
Fishing company Sanford gained 2c early to 442 and Rubicon gained 5c to 100.
In the US, the Dow Jones industrial average ended Friday down 1.1 percent at 11,018.66, the Standard&Poor's 500 Index was down 1.6 percent at 1192.14, and the Nasdaq Composite Index was down 1.4 percent at 2481.26.
After a rally that lasted six straight weeks, stocks were down as Google Inc, Bank of America Corp and General Electric Co reported quarterly results that fell short of heightened expectations.
Amid the largest trading volume since last May, Goldman Sachs fell 13 percent to $US160.89 per share in its worst one-day drop since January 2009.
The fall was on a volume of more than 100 million shares after the Securities and Exchange Commission charged the Wall Street firm with fraud over its handling of a debt product tied to subprime mortgages.