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Late start to trading day as shares rise

NZ Newswire logoNZ Newswire 8/03/2017 Sophie Boot

New Zealand shares rose in a trading day that started late because of a technical glitch at the exchange.

Chorus, Comvita and Contact Energy gained while Property for Industry dropped.

The S&P/NZX50 Index gained 10.6 points, or 0.1 per cent, to 7,178.23. Within the index, 26 stocks rose, 16 fell and eight were unchanged. Turnover was $150 million.

The stock market opened late after IT connection problems caused an hour-and-a-half delay. The late start was due to problems in Wellington-based NZX's trading system and FIX gateway connections.

Chorus led the index, up 2.8 per cent to $4.02. It beat first-half profit expectations and raised its forecast for annual earnings in February, although the shares dropped back after the result, having gained ahead of that.

"It has basically just made back everything they've lost since February, the result looking back was not outstanding," said Greg Easton, investment adviser at Craigs Investment Partners.

"Their performance has been okay but it's not a company that's going to provide a lot of growth. It's going to have to maintain a very steady dividend to remain attractive."

Comvita rose 2.6 per cent to $7.80 and Contact Energy gained 1.9 per cent to $4.91.

Vista Group International advanced 1.7 per cent to $5.55. It expects to generate "meaningful revenue" for its Movio analytics division after signing US cinema advertiser Screenvision Direct as a customer.

The deal boosts Movio's market share of onscreen advertising, with Screenvision operating programmes across 15,000 screens in 2,400 US theatres.

Restaurant Brands gained 0.6 per cent to $5.39. It has changed its corporate structure, splitting into three regional operating divisions following its acquisition of the largest fast-food operator in Hawaii.

Property for Industry was the worst performer, down 1.3 per cent to $1.58, while A2 Milk dropped 1.2 per cent to $2.43.

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