Logistics company Mainfreight helped pull New Zealand’s stock market higher as it continued to ride a wave of upbeat earnings guidance from Friday.
The S&P/NZX 50 Index rose 120 points, or 1.1%, to 10,902.31. Turnover was a light $95.1 million.
Mainfreight led the market higher, up 5.6% at $71.80, adding to the 4.5% gain on Friday after saying first-half profit rose by almost two thirds. Forsyth Barr upgraded the stock to an outperform, and chair Bruce Plested and managing director Don Braid both disclosed they'd bought shares on-market in the past week.
Peter McIntyre, an investment adviser at Craig’s Investments Partners, said Mainfreight drove the market higher today on turnover of $4.4m. Fellow blue-chip stock, healthcare manufacturer Fisher & Paykel Healthcare rose 3.7% to $19.12.
McIntyre said tech companies will be the focus this week with the likes of Amazon, Microsoft and Apple reporting.
Travel software developer Serko rose 3.7% to $3.05 today and fleet management software and hardware developer Eroad advanced 0.8% to $1.31. Utility pole management company ikeGPS rose 1.1% to 91 cents.
Turners Automotive was up 0.3% to $3.48 after saying first-half pre-tax profit would be “modestly” ahead of last year’s $23.2m, on an increase in car units sold year-on-year, despite the wider NZ used car market being down 7.5%.
Among the day's decliners were would-be phosphate miner Chatham Rock Phosphate, which fell 6.1% to 23 cents and financial services firm Heartland Group, which dropped 4% to $1.68.
A2 Milk declined 0.7% to $5.90 after saying its long-serving chief operating officer Shareef Khan will leave the company at the end of the year. Synlait Milk rose 2.3% to $3.16.
Cancer diagnostics company Pacific Edge was down 3.4% at 42.5 cents and retirement village developer and operator Ryman Healthcare declined 2.6% to $8.23.
The NZ dollar was trading at 57.11 US cents at 3pm in Wellington, up from 56.63 cents on Friday.
BNZ senior economist Nick Smyth said the NZ dollar could find itself in a “tug of war” between positive risk appetite forces pushing it higher and a weaker yuan sending it lower over the coming weeks.
“Still,” he wrote this morning, “that’s better than the generally downside forces that have been in play for most of the year.”