Market close: Fisher and Paykel Healthcare drives down NZ sharemarket

Heavyweight Fisher and Paykel Healthcare almost single-handedly drove the New Zealand sharemarket down nearly half a per cent as health stocks were hit overseas.

The S&P/NZX 50 Index fell 62.28 points or 0.47 per cent to 13,108.61, after reaching an intraday high of 13,178.47.

There were 62 gainers and 67 decliners over the whole market, and trading was steady with 58.58 million shares worth $191.85 million changing hands.

Global medical devices supplier Fisher and Paykel Healthcare, which made up 14 per cent of the market’s capitalisation, fell $1.14 or 3.49 per cent to $31.55 on trade worth $18.5m. Fisher and Paykel’s dive made up nearly 50 points of the market’s fall.

Matt Goodson, managing director of Salts Funds Management, said some of the large healthcare and health technology stocks around the world were quite weak and this didn’t help sentiment for Fisher and Paykel.

“Fisher and Paykel’s share price oscillates around the latest views on Covid and use of respiratory devices in hospitals,” he said.

The vaccine stocks Moderna, BioNTec and Johnson & Johnson were down on Wall Street, and Fisher and Paykel’s counterpart in Australia, ResMed, had fallen 3.05 per cent to A$39.05 ($40.32) on the ASX by 5.45pm NZ time.

Church donor management firm Pushpay Holdings was down 6c or 3.16 per cent to $1.84 after holding an Investor Day presentation.

Goodson said there is some doubt over the size of the United States Catholic Church market and what sort of uptake Pushpay will get for its software.

Briscoe Group reported its half year result to end of July, showing record net profit of $47.46m, up 69.6 per cent on revenue of $358.42m, up 22.6 per cent. Its growth had been flagged earlier to the market and Briscoe’s share price gained 1c to $7.01.

Briscoe’s homeware sales increased 20.77 per cent to $222.63m and sporting goods rose 25.66 per cent to $135.79m. Online sales now make up 16.16 per cent of the revenue, and Briscoe is paying an increased interim dividend of 11.5c a share on October 14.

The retailer said sales over the final two weeks of August during the lockdown were negatively impacted by about $17m, and it expected pent-up demand to drive sales from October onwards. Briscoe is still expecting to deliver full-year net profit of up to $85m and well above the previous year’s record $73.2m.

Auckland International Airport’s total passenger volumes increased 59.7 per cent in July and 68.4 per cent in August compared with the same periods last year. International passengers rose 332 per cent before the transtasman travel bubble burst. The airport’s share price slipped 1c to $7.42. Air New Zealand was down 3.5c or 1.92 per cent to $1.53.

The leading energy companies had a down day. Contact declined 11c to $8.02; Meridian fell 14c or 2.7 per cent to $5.05; and Mercury which went ex-dividend decreased 8.8c to $6.48.

Skellerup Holdings declined 8c to $5.34; a2 Milk was down 8c to $5.70; and PGG Wrightson fell 9c or 2.47 per cent to $3.56.

Port companies Marsden Maritime Holdings declined 13c or 2 per cent to $6.37, and Napier Port was down 6c or 1.85 per cent to $3.18.

Other decliners were EROAD, falling 19c or 3.28 per cent to $5.61; Gentrack decreasing 6c or 3.05 per cent to $1.91; Harmoney losing 5c or 2.5 per cent to $1.95; NZME shedding 3c or 3 per cent to 97c; Just Life down 5c or 5.43 per cent to 87c; and Solution Dynamics falling 10c or 3.33 per cent to $2.90.

Chorus, which has become a volatile stock for a steady and stable telecommunications business, gained 7c to $6.82. Synlait Milk rose 8c or 2.61 per cent to $3.14; Fletcher Building was up 17c or 2.33 per cent to $7.47; Mainfreight picked up 50c to $95.75; Vista Group increased 7c or 2.88 per cent to $2.50; and Accordant Group rose 11c or 6.32 per cent to $1.85.

Property stocks were again strong. Goodman Property Trust gained 4c to $2.60; Property for Industry rose 7.5c or 2.54 per cent to $3.025; Investore picked up 4c or 2.03 per cent to $2.01; and Precinct Properties was up 1.5c to $1.685.

Transtasman chemicals business DGL Group continued its climb, rising 14c or 4.75 per cent to $3.09. After raising $100m at $1 a share in its initial public offer, DGL first traded on May 25 at $1.10 and its share price has now tripled.

Seeka is buying Northland kiwifruit business Orangewood for $6.55m including $1.84m debt and Orangewood will become a wholly owned subsidiary. Seeka’s share price increased 3c to $5.40.

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