Need to know: Friday, May 2

Last updated 07:53 02/05/2014

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What you need to know on Friday morning, May 2

- NZX50 down 23.47 points (0.45 per cent) to 5209.21

- NZ dollar at US86.26 cents, A93.03c, 88.18yen, 51.06p, €62.19c

- Brent crude oil at US$107.79 a barrel

- Spot gold at US$1283.80 an ounce

What's on today

- There are no major items scheduled on the finance calendar, but Kiwis will be hoping to do the business in the Anzac rugby league test across the ditch tonight

Stocks to watch

- Synlait Milk: The dairy company faces an anxious wait after it missed out on approval to sell infant formula in China. Shares in the company are sitting at $3.73, giving it a market capitalisation of almost $550 million.

Top international news

- US consumer spending has hit a five-year high, increasing by 0.9 per cent in March after rising by 0.5 per cent in February. March's gain was the biggest since August 2009 and beat economists' expectations for a 0.6 per cent rise.

Manufacturing is also on the up with the Institute for Supply Management's index of national factory activity rising to 54.9 in April, up from 53.7 in March. A reading above 50 indicates expansion.

Something else for your morning

- The Lord of the Rings movies didn't just boost New Zealand's tourism sector, they helped the tech sector as well. A Wellington-based cloud-computing company that has just been sold to Microsoft can trace its origins to the filming of the fantasy trilogy.

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- Fairfax Media

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