Australian, N.Z. Stocks: Boart, Hastings, Hills, IOOF, Fisher

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Australian, N.Z. Stocks: Boart, Hastings, Hills, IOOF, Fisher

Australian, N.Z. Stocks: Boart, Hastings, Hills, IOOF, Fisher

By Shani Raja

The following were among the most active shares in the market today. Stock symbols are in parentheses after company names.

Mining shares: Copper declined for the second straight day in New York yesterday on speculation that China may increase borrowing costs to damp accelerating inflation.

BHP Billiton Ltd. (BHP AU), the world’s largest mining company, dropped 0.4 percent to A$45.21. Rio Tinto Group (RIO AU), the world’s third-biggest miner, lost 0.6 percent to A$86.51.

Gold producers: Gold fell to a two-week low yesterday on investor sales after the metal’s rally to a record this year.

Newcrest Mining Ltd. (NCM AU), Australia’s biggest gold producer, declined 1 percent to A$41.05. Rival St. Barbara Ltd. (SBM AU) sank 1.6 percent to A$2.46.

Boart Longyear Ltd. (BLY AU) gained 1.9 percent to A$4.38. The Australian provider of drilling services to mining companies said in a profit forecast it expects full-year earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortization of at least $220 million ($218 million).

Hastings Diversified Utilities Fund (HDF AU), which owns natural gas pipelines in Australia, surged 4.7 percent to A$1.675 after the company sold a stake in South East Water.

Hills Industries Ltd. (HIL AU), whose products range from television antennas to children’s play equipment, slumped 8.1 percent to A$1.985 after revising its profit guidance for the half year ending Dec. 31.

IOOF Holdings Ltd. (IFL AU) declined 1.5 percent to A$7.75. The Australian investment manager was downgraded to “neutral” from “buy” at UBS AG.

Lend Lease Group (LLC AU) advanced 1 percent to A$8.48. Australia’s largest developer said it’s in talks to buy Valemus Ltd., the local unit of German construction company Bilfinger Berger SE.

New Zealand:

Fisher & Paykel Appliances Holdings Ltd. (FPA NZ) plunged 11 percent to 51 New Zealand cents. New Zealand’s largest maker of refrigerators cut its full-year earnings forecast for its appliance unit because of deteriorating retail trading conditions.

PGG Wrightson Ltd. (PGW NZ) tumbled 10 percent to 43 New Zealand cents. New Zealand’s largest agricultural services company lowered its full-year earnings forecast citing difficult first-half trading conditions in the New Zealand farming sector.

Source: www.businessweek.com

–Editor: John McCluskey.

To contact the reporter on this story: Shani Raja in Sydney at sraja4@bloomberg.net.

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Nick Gentle at ngentle2@bloomberg.net.