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SOE sales projected to raise more than $4.4 billion+

26 Mar 13

SOE sales projected to raise more than $4.4 billion+
Ohakuri dame.. an asset of Mighty River Power: 228,000 "definitely want to buy MRP shares

New Zealand adults at this stage intend to definitely invest about $4.4 billion in state owned enterprise shares being offered for sale, or likely sale, by the Government.


Further sales could be made to a significant group of adults who say they are “interested” in buying SOE shares, in addition to those who say they will “definitely” buy.


The “definite” interest is indicated in a Horizon Research survey of 2,204 people aged 18+ between March 12 and 19. The survey has a maximum margin of error of ±2.1% overall.


The definite interest among personal investors indicates the Government could succeed in it aim of raising between $5 and 7 billion overall, once institutional and offshore investors are included.


The snap shot was taken  a week before registration of interest in buying the Mighty River Power shares closed and while a major Government funded advertising campaign was still under way to encourage interest in the float.


At the time of the survey 6.8% of respondents said they “definitely” wanted to buy Mighty River Power shares. This is the equivalent to 228,000 people 18+ who look likely to form the float’s personal investor bed rock. Registrations of interest at the time were about 300,000 and have since reportedly risen to more than 420,000.


Horizon says for 48.7% of those definitely intending to buy SOE shares these will be the only shares they own. Among the additional interested group SOE shares would be the only ones owned by 67.8%.


The average amount “definite” buyers intend to invest in total in SOE shares is also much higher than “interested” buyers, $14,500 compared to $6,250. Overall, 9.9% say they “definitely” want to buy SOE shares and 21.1% are “interested” in buying them, for a total of 31%  “definite” or “interested” investors.


The Horizon survey finds 52.9% of New Zealanders aged 18+ oppose the sale of shares in State Owned Enterprises (this compares with 52.2% opposed in a March 14-17 telephone poll of 750 respondents published by the New Zealand Herald on March 22. That poll also reported 30% interest in buying SOE shares).


Horizon finds 20.4% support the sales, 17.1% are neutral, and 9.6% not sure.


Of those who supported the parties that formed the Government after the 2011 election, 51.3% support the sale of SOE shares and 21.3% oppose the sale.  22.3% are neutral on the issue.


Of those who supported the parties that are in opposition following the 2011 general election, 76.6% oppose the sale and 5.5% support the sale of shares.  10.6% are neutral.


Only with the 2011 supporters of ACT New Zealand and the National Party does support have a majority.  With the exception of Maori Party supporters, 23.4% of whom are unsure whether they support of oppose the sale, a strong majority of the supporters of each of the other political parties oppose the sale.


Greatest support comes from ACT New Zealand supporters: 76.8% of them support the sale and 8.3% oppose.


Greatest opposition comes from New Zealand First supporters: 84.5% of them oppose the sale while 2.9% of them support selling SOE shares. 


Among National Party supporters at the 2011 general election, 52.3% support the sale of shares, 22.8% are neutral and 20.4% oppose.


Horizon is currently analysing results covering intentions to invest in packages of SOE shares, investment interest in individual companies and the likely impact of any incentive to encourage New Zealanders to hold onto SOE shares they buy.




For further information please contact

Grant McInman


Horizon Research

Telephone: 021 076 2040