Australian, New Zealand Stocks: Ansell, BHP, Gunns, Hallenstein

Australia’s S&P/ASX 200 Index rose 0.1 percent to 4,279.6 at 10:47 a.m. in Sydney, recouping some of yesterday’s 0.5 percent fall.

New Zealand’s NZX 50 Index also rose 0.1 percent to 3,317.7 in Wellington today, extending yesterday’s 0.1 percent advanced.

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

Woodside Petroleum Ltd. (WPL AU) rose 1.1 percent to A$34.77 as crude oil for March delivery advanced for a second day in New York.

Ansell Ltd. (ANN AU) gained 1.2 percent to A$15.13 after the condom maker reported first-half profit of A$64.9 million ($70 million), topping the average analyst estimate of A$63.5 million. The company also reafirmed its full-year earnings per share guidance of 97 to 103 cents.

BHP Billiton Ltd. (BHP AU) slid 1.1 percent to A$37.50 after the world’s largest mining company reported a 5.5 percent drop in first-half profit to $9.9 billion, falling short of the average analyst estimate of $10 billion. Chief Executive Officer Marius Kloppers told a conference call the company remains “cautious” on the market outlook.

Gunns Ltd. (GNS AU) soared 60 percent to 20 Australian cents after the nation’s biggest woodchip exporter announced plans to raise A$130 million in a rights issue to help facilitate a “futher significant reduction” in debt.

New Zealand stocks:

Hallenstein Glasson Holdings Ltd. (HLG NZ) rose 2.8 percent to A$3.65 after the clothing retailer said first-half earnings rose about 25 percent to NZ$8.7 million ($7 million) amid higher sales and improved margins. Revenue advanced 7.9 percent.

To contact the reporter on this story: Sarah Jones in London at

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Andrew Rummer at

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