New Zealand shares have joined a global sell-off, on concern about heightening tensions between western powers and Russia over Ukraine.
The benchmark NZX 50 Index fell 38 points, or 0.7 per cent, to 5,116 on Monday.
Within the index, 32 stocks fell, 11 rose and seven were unchanged. Turnover was $200 million.
The European Union is moving to impose further sanctions against Russia amid concerns the nation is adding to its annexation of Crimea with further incursions into Ukraine.
A2 Milk, which gained 15 per cent over the past year, fell 7.1 per cent to 78 cents, its lowest this year.
Xero fell 5.2 per cent to $30.25, and has declined 24 per cent in the past month after rising more than 200 per cent in 2013.
Pacific Edge, which has gained 90 per cent over the past nine months, declined 1.9 per cent to $1.04.
“There are one or two concerns out there with Russia, and I think investors are being pretty cautious and keeping a close eye on developments there,” said Grant Williamson, a director at Hamilton Hindin Greene.
“With events offshore, whereas a month or two ago everybody was looking at the growth side of the market, now investors are certainly taking a more cautious approach.
“There is still quite a bit of profit-taking in the high growth sector of the market.”
Chorus, the telecommunications network provider, fell 2.8 per cent to $1.74. Auckland International Airport dropped 1.5 per cent to $3.91. Infratil, the infrastructure investor, slipped 1.3 per cent to $2.24 and construction firm Fletcher Building was unchanged at $9.76.
Telecom went against the trend, climbing 1.9 per cent to $2.665.
Goodman Fielder jumped 20 per cent to a two-month high of 69 cents on the NZX after the world’s biggest palm oil processor, Wilmar International, teamed up with Hong Kong-listed investor First Pacific Co to make an $A1.27 billion ($NZ1.37b) offer for the Australasian food ingredients maker.