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NZ stocks fall as Tegel hurt by price war

NZ Newswire logoNZ Newswire 13/04/2017 Jonathan Underhill

New Zealand shares fell on Thursday, led by Tegel Group, after government figures showed chicken prices may be suffering from rivalry among suppliers.

Restaurant Brands and SkyCity Entertainment Group were among leading decliners as ongoing geopolitical tensions and the looming US earnings season sapped investors' risk appetite.

The S&P/NZX 50 index fell 21.74 points, or 0.3 per cent, to 7229.80. Within the index, 31 stocks fell, 15 rose and four were unchanged. Turnover was $131 million.

Tegel dropped 2.5 per cent to $1.16 after government food price data for March showed chicken prices fell 6.5 per cent for the year, extending a trend of annual declines since June 2015.

Chicken has become more investible in Australia and New Zealand, with Inghams Group listed on the ASX, but the two companies are also battling for market share.

"There's lots of competitive tension between Tegel and Inghams," said Peter McIntyre, an investment adviser at Craigs Investment Partners.

"There's a bit of a price war going on" and the poultry price figures had also weighed on the stock.

SkyCity dropped 1.6 per cent to $4.45 and Restaurant Brands fell 1.5 per cent to $5.39.

Sky Network Television fell 0.8 per cent after the Commerce Commission published its reasons for declining a proposed merger with Vodafone in February. Spark, which opposed the merger, fell 0.6 per cent to $3.575.

NZX rose 1 per cent to $1.06 after Oceania Healthcare's initial public offering price was at near the bottom of the range in a bookbuild at 79 cents. The aged-care group plans to raise $200 million in the first IPO of the year.

Trustpower rose 1.1 per cent to $4.68 after the utilities company said annual earnings were at the higher end of guidance after strong generation, especially in Australia.

NPT rose 1.7 per cent to 60 cents and Kiwi Property Group was unchanged at $1.43 after the New Zealand Shareholders' Association said it would be voting its proxies in favour of a deal between the two companies.

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