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NZ shares hit record high

NZ NewswireNZ Newswire 30/05/2016 Sophie Boot

New Zealand's benchmark stock index hit a record high, led by Air New Zealand © Brendon O'Hagan/Bloomberg New Zealand's benchmark stock index hit a record high, led by Air New Zealand New Zealand's benchmark stock index hit a record high, led by Air New Zealand and Tower, while Steel & Tube Holdings continued to decline.

The S&P/NZX 50 Index rose 27.09 points, or 0.4 per cent, to 7,019.64. Within the index, 25 stocks rose, 16 fell and nine were unchanged. Turnover was $97.6 million

Air New Zealand led gainers on the index, rising 4 per cent to $2.215. It sank to its lowest level since November 2014 last week on concern about increased competition and the likelihood that Virgin Australia will need recapitalising before it can be sold.

"It's continuing to consolidate after being sold off close to the $2 mark," said Peter McIntyre, investment adviser at Craigs Investment Partners.

Tower gained 3.8 per cent to $1.52, bouncing off last week's tumble from $1.77 after it posted a wider first-half loss. The insurer wrote down the value of its information technology system, which it said was weighing on its ambitions and needs improving.

SkyCity advanced 2.6 per cent to $4.81 and has gained 7.1 per cent this year.

"It's really a tourism-based stock and that's one of the themes running through our equity market at the moment, anything in the tourism sector is being bidded up well," McIntyre said.

TradeMe Group gained 2.1 per cent to $4.81 and Fisher & Paykel Healthcare rose 1.9 per cent to $10.50

Steel & Tube Holdings was the worst performer, down 2.5 per cent to $1.99.

Skellerup Holdings dropped 2.2 per cent to $1.32 and Mighty River Power shed 1.3 per cent to $3.02.

Outside the main index, Hellaby Holdings dropped 3.1 per cent to $2.49.

Sealegs rose 13.6 per cent to 12.5 cents. The amphibious vehicle maker turned to an annual profit after adopting a new strategy, lifting its sales and profit margin.

Net profit was $507,576 in the year ended March 31, from a loss of $2.4 million a year earlier, the Auckland-based company said in a statement.

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