Shares rise on first trading day of 2018

Sophie Boot
(Australian Associated Press)

 

New Zealand shares rose in the first trading session of 2018 on Wednesday, led higher by Pushpay Holdings and Fletcher Building.

The S&P/NZX50 Index gained 26.83 points, or 0.3 per cent, to 8424.91. Within the index, 27 stocks rose, 17 fell and six were unchanged. Turnover was $89.2 million.

“Volumes haven’t been too bad given a lot of institutions and fund managers are still away on holiday, but the phones have been pretty quiet today,” said Grant Williamson, director at Hamilton Hindin Greene.

“A lot of investors don’t have their minds on the market right now.”

Pushpay Holdings was the best performer, up 4.3 per cent to $4.35.

The mobile payments app company reached its target of US$100m in annualised committed monthly revenue by December 31, and reiterated it expects to break even on a monthly cash flow basis before the end of 2018.

“They had predicted what they were going to achieve, but the market has taken heart from the announcement,” Mr Williamson said.

“With Xero moving off the board, investors are looking at companies in the tech sector – obviously Pushpay is one, ERoad, Serko has done pretty well as well. You’ve seen movement up in a number of those stocks.”

ERoad gained 3.1 per cent to $3.69 in the day, while Serko rose 5.5 per cent to $2.31. Neither stock is listed on the benchmark index.

Fletcher Building gained, up 2 per cent to $7.75, with Heartland Bank rising 1.9 per cent to $2.12.

Auckland International Airport rose 1.5 per cent to $6.58. It is still considering its options for its 24.55 per cent stake in North Queensland Airport and expects to give an update by next month.

Skycity Entertainment Group was the worst performer, down 1.9 per cent to $4.07, while Fisher & Paykel Healthcare dropped 1.8 per cent to $14.09.

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