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NZ shares more; SkyCity falls as fire rages

New Zealand stocks were broadly stronger, adding to the bullish mood across Asia. SkyCity Entertainment Group reached its lowest level in seven weeks, with a fire on top of the company's new all-day international convention center.

The S & P / NZX 50 Index increased 27.64 points, or 0.3%, to 11,090.39. Within the index, 23 stocks rose, 21 fell and six remained unchanged. Revenue was $ 96.3 million, with only four shares traded in volumes of more than one million shares.

Asian markets followed Wall Street higher, with investors enthusiastic about the positive noises about US-China trade talks. US President Donald Trump said the deal was going well and China's Deputy Foreign Minister Le Yucheng said progress had been made. South Korea's Kospi 200 Index rose 1.3% in the afternoon, Australia's S & P / ASX 200 Index up 0.4% and Singapore's Straits Times Index up 0.8%.

James Lindsay, portfolio manager at Nikko Asset Management, said the local market is following international indications ahead of the September balance sheet reporting season next month.

"The trade wars have not really had a substantial impact here and we are probably lucky that things like milk prices on the farm have increased by 30 cents this morning. Things like that help."

The Fonterra Cooperative Group raised its milk price forecast to $ 6.55 to $ 7.55 per kilo of milk solids, citing a firm demand for whole milk powder and strong prices for skimmed milk powder. Fonterra Shareholders Fund The units, which give investors exposure to Fonterra's profit stream, rose 1.3% to $ 4.04.

A2 Milk Co up 1 percent at $ 13.07 while the rival dairy processor Synlait Milk fell 1.7% to $ 9.50. Skellerup Holdings, whose product mix includes agricultural products, rose 2.2% to $ 2.30.

Air new zealand fell 0.5% to $ 2,825 after its monthly operating numbers confirmed the slowdown in domestic passenger growth that the airline had signaled earlier this year. Auckland International Airport rose 0.9% to $ 9,165. Last week, its monthly passenger numbers showed a slight drop in August volumes.

Lindsay said the numbers from Air New Zealand and Auckland airport suggested some drivers slowed, but the airline was in a good position compared to its peers.

"I don't think there is a specific change in the way we see the slowdown of various variables in New Zealand," he said.

Summerset Group recorded the biggest gain of the day, 2.9% at $ 6.77, at a volume of just 66,000 shares, about one-fifth of its average of 330,000 shares.

Sky City fell to $ 3.82 and ended the day at 2.8% to $ 3.87. About 1.5 million shares changed hands, more than double the 619,000 average in 90 days. The slip was an instinctive response to the headlines of the fire that engulfed the construction site of the convention center.

Grant Davies, an investment adviser at Hamilton Hindin Greene, said it was too early to judge how much impact the fire would have on the already delayed project.

"A lot of people are working with rumors and just guessing. Is there an argument for negotiations to be halted until more certainty? It's a gray area," Davies said.

Fletcher Building fell 1.5% to $ 4.65 in a volume of 3.5 million shares, more than the average of 1.5 million. However, real estate stocks have been trading with increasing volumes recently, with prices under pressure as investors ponder whether they will be removed from an MSCI index in the next reweight.

Mercury NZ, which is expected to fall on the MSCI index, fell 0.9% to $ 5.45 in a volume of 1 million shares.

Sky network television fell 3.7% to $ 1.04, posting the biggest decline of the day, with a volume of just 187,000 shares, well below the average of 1.2 million shares. Today, the pay-TV operator has extended its rights to broadcast Netball NZ home competitions and Silver Ferns matches for another three years until 2024.

Spark New Zealand, which has been aggressively competing for sports rights, declined 0.4% to $ 4.56, with a volume of 1.4 million shares.

Goodman Property Trust increased 0.2% to $ 2.24 after declaring that the retail component of its fundraising was over-subscribed and will be expanded. It targeted $ 15 million of retailers scoped to accept another $ 10 million in subscriptions and ended up with $ 35 million in applications.

Outside the benchmark, PGG Wrightson rose 1.2% to $ 2.51 after stating expectations for earnings growth at today's annual meeting.

Wellington Drive Technologies jumped 15.2% to 19.7 cents after reporting a profit of $ 580,000 in the nine months ended September 30 and raised its annual operating profit orientation.

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