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NZ Oil & Gas begins share buy back bid

NZ NewswireNZ Newswire 15/09/2016 Jonathan Underhill

New Zealand Oil & Gas, the unprofitable energy explorer, has launched a stand in the market to buy back as many as 40 million shares, creating a "liquidity event" for the thinly traded securities.

The company has hired brokerage First NZ Capital to buy shares for as much as 55 cents apiece, a price it last reached in mid-2015.

The biggest single day of trading in the past two years was on March 20 last year, when 8.95m shares changed hands.

The stand will begin at 1pm on Friday. The shares rose 1.9 per cent to 54.5 cents.

NZOG got approval to buy back as many as 64m shares at a special meeting of shareholders last year but said the stock has traded in such small volumes "it would take years to complete the buyback at current rates of progress".

It expects to continue with on-market buybacks after the tender.

The company reported a net loss of $29.8m in the 12 months ended June 30, after writing down the value of its holding in Cue Energy Resources. The loss widened from $14.4m a year earlier.

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