Shares grind higher
New Zealand shares ground higher in morning trade, with strong buying in blue chips helping the bourse chip closer to its first gain in three sessions in an otherwise muted session.
Offshore leads were tepid, with global stockmarkets gaining in response to a lack of negative headlines rather than any surge in investor optimism.
The NZX 50 Index rose 6.39 points, or 0.16 per cent, to 3889.69 as of noon. Just over 13 million shares changed hands in the first two hours of trade, worth $38.5m in turnover.
Fisher & Paykel Healthcare, the maker of breathing masks and respirators, rose 0.9 per cent to $2.28.
Telecom, the country's biggest phone company and most traded stock, rose 0.7 per cent to $2.28.
Fletcher Building, the country's biggest construction firm, rose 0.3 per cent to $7.26.
Between the three companies they accounted for half of the volumes to go through the exchange today.
Skellerup, the industrial rubber goods maker, rose 1.8 per cent to $1.69.
NZX, the share maker operator, rose 1.8 per cent to $1.15.
PGG Wrightson, the rural services provider, fell 6.6 per cent to 34c, leading decliners on the exchange. The stock is rated as "buy" according a Reuters poll of five analysts.
Pumpkin Patch, the children's clothing retailer, fell 0.8 per cent on the back of profit taking. The stock has gained over 30 per cent in price over the past three months.
Fisher & Paykel Appliances, the whiteware maker facing a takeover from shareholder Haier, fell 0.8 per cent to $1.21. Today's price - which is one cent above the offer - suggests shareholders are beginning to question bets the Chinese firm will have to raise its price to buyout the iconic kiwi company.