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NZ shares fall, led by Sky TV

NZ Newswire logoNZ Newswire 7/06/2017 Sophie Boot

New Zealand shares dropped on Wednesday, led lower by Sky Network Television as the pay-TV operator sank to a nine-year low after a significant shareholder sold down.

Steel & Tube Holdings also fell on news of court charges over its steel mesh.

The S&P/NZX50 Index fell 27.07 points, or 0.4 per cent, to 7467.9. Within the index, 33 stocks fell, 14 rose and three were unchanged. Turnover was $159 million.

Bellwether stock Fletcher Building fell 1.4 per cent to $7.54.

"There's a pullback on larger stocks such as Fletcher Building, from where it was one-and-a-half weeks ago nine of its 11 trading sessions have been down on reasonable volumes," said James Smalley, director at Hamilton Hindin Greene.

"There is maybe a bit of foreign investor selling out of our market, and possibly a little concern about the Auckland housing market slowing."

Sky TV was the worst performer, down 4 per cent to $3.36, the lowest close since 2008, and has dropped 8.7 per cent this month.

On Wednesday morning, Australian investment bank UBS disclosed it had sold down about 1 per cent of its stake in Sky TV, leaving it with 5.8 per cent in total.

New Zealand Refining Co dropped 3.1 per cent to $2.48, and Vital Healthcare Property Trust fell 2.2 per cent to $2.22.

Xero rose 0.6 per cent to $26.25. Of the last 13 trading sessions, the stock has risen in 12 and been flat for one.

The shares began rising in mid-May when the cloud-based accounting software firm announced it was moving closer to its first ever profit as customer numbers continue to swell and its 2017 full-year net loss narrowed as revenue grew.

SkyCity Entertainment Group was the best performer, up 1.6 per cent to $4.46, while Vector rose 1.5 per cent to $3.37.tside the main index, Steel & Tube dropped 6.8 per cent to $2.35. It is facing 29 court charges of making false and misleading representations about its steel mesh product SE62.

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