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Shares rise, bolstered by F&P dispute

NZ Newswire logoNZ Newswire 17/05/2017 Rebecca Howard

NZX signage  in Wellington.  (File photo) © Hagen Hopkins/Getty Images NZX signage in Wellington. (File photo) New Zealand shares rose on Wednesday, boosted by news that health appliance firm ResMed dropped a complaint against Fisher & Paykel Healthcare at the US International Trade Commission.

This offset largely tepid trading as weak international leads sidelined many investors and a slide in dual-listed ANZ Banking Group and Westpac weighed on the bourse.

The S&P/NZX 50 index increased 15 points or 0.2 per cent to 7422.50. Within the index, 15 stocks rose, seven were unchanged and 28 fell. Turnover was $151.9 million.

Fisher & Paykel Healthcare added 1.7 per cent to $10.18 helping the market outperform much of Asia, where concerns about US President Donald Trump's administration hurt investor sentiment.

Japan's Topix fell 0.6 per cent in afternoon trading, while South Korea's Kospi slipped 0.4 per cent and Australia's S&P/ASX 200 down 0.9 per cent.

"We are in positive territory and that is due to Fisher & Paykel Healthcare. It was up 39 cents at one stage which obviously was a great boost to the market as whole," said Bryon Burke, head of equities at Craigs Investment Partners.

"It was really Fisher & Paykel Healthcare that boosted turnover."

The stock touched a high of $10.49 with the notice saying ResMed plans to replace the complaint with a new action and is still pursuing its patent dispute with the New Zealand maker of breathing masks in several other jurisdictions.

Heartland Bank shares rose 1.7 per cent to $1.77 after the local lender said profit rose 13 per cent in the first nine months of its year.

The stock also continued to benefit as its larger Australian rivals remain out of favour due to increasing regulatory costs. ANZ fell 0.3 per cent to $31.51 while Westpac declined 1.5 per cent to $34.80.

Mr Burke said there were more losers than gainers on the market but volumes were light.

Sky Network Television posted the biggest fall, down 3 per cent to $3.55.

A2 Milk led the index higher, adding 2.3 per cent to $3.56. Units in Fonterra ended flat at $6 after a better-than-expected overnight Global Dairy Trade auction.

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