New Zealand’s market edged down as investors hold their breath alongside the rest of the financial world before the next US Federal Reserve’s interest rate hike arrives tomorrow.
Will it just be the widely expected 75 basis points or could it be higher?
Jarden's wealth management director, Greg Main, said that the 75bp rise seemed “pretty much baked in” and investors were more interested in what the US central bank would comment on and indicate its future plans.
“It’s why we’ve seen a little bit of weakness in the market in the US and NZ market,” he told BusinessDesk.
“We’ve just had that backdrop today,” he said. “All eyes are on the Fed.”
The S&P/NZX 50 Index fell 33.86 points, or 0.3%, to 11,282.78. Turnover was $150.3 million.
Today, system software company Trade Window Holdings had the biggest rise, climbing 13.8% to 66 cents.
Shares in transport firm Move Logistics were up by almost 10% earlier in the day but ended the afternoon up 5.5% to $1.16.
Care A2 Plus is in hot water (or hot milk in this case) with A2 Milk Co who have filed a claim against Care A2 in the federal court in New South Wales for using the A2 brand.
A2 Milk wants a permanent injunction so Care A2 company can’t sell A2 milk-branded products without the authority of A2 Milk.
Damages and an order from the court that one of the Care A2 Plus respondents withdraw a series of trademark applications have also been requested.
Today, A2 Milk nudged up 0.5% to $5.75. Synlait was down 1.6% to $3.08 and Fonterra Shareholders’ Fund Units rose 1% to $3.03.
The other big agriculture sector news today was a 4.6% fall in global dairy auction prices overnight.
NZ King Salmon was also up 7.1% to 22.5 cents. The company’s chief executive Grant Rosewarne resigned abruptly yesterday after 13 years in the role.
Cancer diagnostics company Pacific Edge climbed almost 5% earlier in the day but closed up 1.2% to 42.5 cents.
Tourism operator Tourism Holdings fell 2.2% to $3.57.
Church management software company Pushpay, which has kept the market abuzz since last Friday thanks to its board hoping to get shareholders to accept a $1.53b takeover bid, was up 0.8% to $1.28 today. The bid price was $1.34.
Sky Television Network announced before its annual meeting today it was changing its dividend payout range from 50-80% of its free cashflow – excluding one-off items – to 60-90%.
As a result, the dividend guidance for the 2023 financial year increased to between $18m and $24m.
Sky TV was up 2.7% to $2.28.
Goodman Property Trust led the index lower, falling 3.4% to $1.99
The Reserve Bank of Australia hiked its cash rate by 25 basis points yesterday and today the NZ dollar extended its recent gains to 91.47 Australian cents. It was trading at 58.43 US cents at 3pm in Wellington, slightly up from 58.24 cents yesterday.
Main added the higher interest rates would be a driver of the US dollar and kiwi dollar.
“That's obviously important for our market and our economy,” he said.