100,000 pre-registered

March 6th, 2013 at 3:00 pm by David Farrar

Tony Ryall announced:

As at 8.30 this morning, 100,000 New Zealanders have pre-registered their interest in buying shares in the Government’s partial share offer of up to 49 per cent of energy company . …

“This compares with the ten days it took for pre-registration to reach the 100,000 mark with the Contact Energy share offer in 1999.

Superb. And there are 16 days still to go.

I wonder when will announce their policy on whether they will compulsorily acquire any shares purchased by New Zealanders and return the companies to 100% government ownership?

All will they say, after all their huffing, that in fact they will do nothing to change the level of private shareholdings if they win the next election?

If Labour are going to have a policy of compulsory nationalisation, they should make this clear before the offer document is tabled.

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46 Responses to “100,000 pre-registered”

  1. tvb (4,425 comments) says:

    I registered this morning. Very straight forward.

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  2. Judith (8,534 comments) says:

    390,000 signed the petition for a referendum.

    (just thought I’d add that point to create a bit of balance) :-) I’m good like that!

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  3. MarkF (102 comments) says:

    @ Judith

    In one day?

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  4. SPC (5,619 comments) says:

    I support Labour having a policy of compulsory re-nationalisation, and I will buy shares if they are on offer.

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  5. Judith (8,534 comments) says:

    MarkF (59) Says:
    March 6th, 2013 at 3:13 pm

    ——————————

    I have no idea, I was just stirring. Please don’t challenge me!! :-)

    However, are you sure you are going to get 100,000 people sign up everyday until April, because I have a feeling you’ll run out of people. BTW what’s with the ‘can’t be in the U.S.’, so it’s ok to be from ‘Outta Mongolia’ and buy shares, just not the U.S. ?

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  6. alex (304 comments) says:

    100,000 is about 2.5% of the population, even if that gets up to 10% thats still a pretty exclusive club.

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  7. Mike Wilkinson (71 comments) says:

    Those who claimed the asset sales would be an election issue in 2014 are welcome to start reassessing their position.

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  8. thedavincimode (6,759 comments) says:

    I wonder when Labour will announce their policy on whether they will compulsorily acquire any shares purchased by New Zealanders and return the companies to 100% government ownership?

    I recall hearing Shearer somewhere the other day saying that Liebore wouldn’t commit to a buyback policy (was it Garner??). When asked why, he said (in between the errs, ahhms and blathering) that he wasn’t sure that the economic argument stacked up, and anyway, they had no idea now what sort of shape the economy would be in blah blah blah when they took over and so couldn’t commit to such a costly undertaking blah blah blah.

    I take it from the interview that Shearer thinks (did I really say that?) that it doesn’t make economic sense to sell them and it also doesn’t make economic sense to buy them. No doubt he’s managed to reconcile that apparent conflict.

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  9. queenstfarmer (782 comments) says:

    If Labour are going to have a policy of compulsory nationalisation, they should make this clear before the offer document is tabled.

    Depends how it is done. If they launch a normal market/NZX takeover, then fine and I see no need to pre-announce that (though it would be nice to know how it would be paid for…).

    What is hilarious is the Labour activists demanding confiscation. I’m sure they realise that not even Russell “print me some money” Norman will dare do that, but it’s fun watching them demand it.

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  10. Rick Rowling (813 comments) says:

    390,000 signed the petition for a referendum.

    390,000 invested a couple of seconds to sign something. 100,000 have registered interest to invest thousands of dollars.

    Reasons someone may have signed the referendum:

    (1) They understood all the facts and nuances regarding partial private ownership of some infrastructure, and think it’s a bad idea.

    (2) They dislike National, and would sign any referendum against National’s policies.

    (3) They dislike “the Guvvamint” whoever they are, and would sign any referendum against Guvvamint policies.

    (4) The girl asking for signatures was soooooo hot.

    (5) The greenie asking for signatures was smelly and it seemed like the easiest way to get rid of him.

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  11. infused (654 comments) says:

    @thedavincimode: That was on talkback on Monday I believe.

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  12. Nookin (3,345 comments) says:

    “However, are you sure you are going to get 100,000 people sign up everyday until April, because I have a feeling you’ll run out of people.”

    Didn’t seem to stop the petitioners, by all accounts. They just got people to sign twice, hooked in some kids and the odd fictitious protester.

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  13. thedavincimode (6,759 comments) says:

    infused

    Or in this case, mumbleback.

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  14. bhudson (4,740 comments) says:

    IIRC Winston has said previously that NZ First would campaign on buying them back at the initial listing price! That’s really going to win him some votes as people see their wealth disappearing with him approaching the treasury benches.

    And Labour actually support the sell down of the assets. During the ’11 campaign Phil Goff pointed out that the dividend returns to govt were up around the $700m mark and were something to be proud of. Of course the dividends were only so high because the companies were selling bits of themselves off, but clearly Labour was happy that that should be so.

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  15. dishy (248 comments) says:

    I’ll wager that plenty of those who pre-registered are notionally / allegedly opposed to the sale, but that their woolly principles are trumped by their fiscal wishes. Every man has his price: look at the post below about Greenpeace hypocrisy.

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  16. Elaycee (4,392 comments) says:

    100,000 is about 2.5% of the population, even if that gets up to 10% thats still a pretty exclusive club.

    Whaaaat? Exclusive Club? How can share ownership of MRP possibly be ‘exclusive’ if anyone can opt in?

    Pffttt….

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  17. Pete George (23,570 comments) says:

    thedavincimode – yes that was an interview with Garner on RadioLive, both Whale and TS had links to it.
    http://www.whaleoil.co.nz/2013/03/david-shearer-on-asset-sales/

    Shearer may not be able to say anything definite but Winston has:

    New Zealand First will use its influence on the next coalition Government to buy back our state-owned power companies which are being flogged off by National and we are committed to buying back the shares at no greater price than paid by the first purchaser.

    That would rule out a coalition agreement with National.

    Maybe Labour think they can waffle on it now and then after the election say that Winston made them do it through a coalition agreement.

    http://yournz.org/2013/03/05/nz-first-asset-share-stance-critical-on-coalition-options/

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  18. SPC (5,619 comments) says:

    The best way to re-nationalise would be to buy back all original shares at the same value they were sold for. This would mean that the government spending on the sale would have been wasted and there would be the extra cost of organising the share buy back.

    Failure to adopt this policy indicates an insincerity to the opposition to the sale. They don’t really mean it, they are just preventing their displacement by a party that actually opposed asset sales.

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  19. SPC (5,619 comments) says:

    Pete George, so Labour is dependent on NZ First reaching 5% to form an anti-asset sale coalition, so allows NZ First to gather votes from the left and right on the issue?

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  20. Pete George (23,570 comments) says:

    The petition isn’t against asset sales. It asks for citizens initiated referendum – but that’s in the fine print, the proposed referendum question is in large bold and many people will have thought that’s what they are signing AGAINST, not for.

    Very misleading. But signing the petition only asks for a CIR.

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  21. thedavincimode (6,759 comments) says:

    hudson

    You’re missing Peters’ as yet unannounced policy that Gold Card holders are to be bought out at 20% over market.

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  22. willtruth (243 comments) says:

    I signed the petition and also registered for the shares. I wish the govt wouldn’t flog off our tax payer assets to the richer quartile of society. But if they do and its a good deal I’d be a fool to miss out.

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  23. ross69 (3,652 comments) says:

    “Treasury showed that selling assets actually makes the debt worse. … When the government fails to raise enough money from the sale to carry through on its promises, and mums and dads on-sell to foreign mums and dads to make a quick buck, asset sales will be exposed as the desperate act of a government who rushed in at the wrong time with the wrong idea.”

    http://www.pundit.co.nz/content/why-the-rush-to-sell-mighty-river-politics

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  24. dai (11 comments) says:

    I registered. Have no intentions of buying any, just doing my bit to confuse the bastards.

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  25. SPC (5,619 comments) says:

    Why is there no public company being formed to invest in dairy plants?

    There are billions in accounts in banks earning low interest returns and yet we are dependent on foreign investors in dairy plants?

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  26. Akld Commercial Lawyer (165 comments) says:

    FYI, the reason for the absolute prohibition on US citizens participating is that as well as having the world’s most active capital markets – the US also has the most extensively policed securities disclosure regime. As a result, whilst US financial institutions may possibly be given the opportunity to participate in the institutional component of the IPO (as they were in Auckland Airport and Contact Energy) because the disclosure hurdles are different for a non-retail offer, the costs and compliance burdens of making a retail offer in the US are prohibitive. This is aside from any political connotations. In order to sheet this home, it is quite common for non-US offer to introduce hurdles and health warnings to make sure that it is very clear that the offer does not extend to US citizens. The hurdles will also stop punters from Outer Mongolia from participating – with the important point of difference being that Outer Mongolian securities law is unlikely to be as draconian as that in the US where the tidal wave of legislation enacted in the aftermath of the Great Depression provided for jail time (in a Federal prison) for offenders. All in the name of protecting the machinery and reputation of the US economy.

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  27. Nick K (1,244 comments) says:

    This from NZ Last:

    New Zealand First will use its influence on the next coalition Government to buy back our state-owned power companies which are being flogged off by National and we are committed to buying back the shares at no greater price than paid by the first purchaser.

    This makes it very easy for Labour to support a buyback.

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  28. Nick K (1,244 comments) says:

    Oops, I’ve just seen Pete George has already quoted that. It makes it very easy for NZ Last to jump up and down for its supporters and then say Labour wouldn’t support it so it can’t be done. Easy MMP politics that.

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  29. simo (150 comments) says:

    Gimme’s lost in the Supreme Court, Liarbour in a muddle, Winston First playing Snakes on a Plane, Greens headboy with his plonker up his arse – stumps have pulled on this debate, let us buy our shares – now piss off with a John Cleese accent

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  30. stigie (1,198 comments) says:

    Wait for it, dearest Penny will be along shortly chaps !!

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  31. Steady Course (3 comments) says:

    Once again i ask the question, if selling a PARTIAL stake in SOME assets isnt the answer whats your alternative? No one from the left seems to be able to answer this question

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  32. Than (473 comments) says:

    What I find most interesting about this is the Stuff poll on the subject. Even before the Unions/WhaleArmy started playing manipulation games it was running at ~55-60% saying the Mighty River sale was a good idea. That’s a massive swing from previous polls, which had 60-80% opposed to asset sales.

    There have been several indications that public opposition to asset sales is widespread but not very deep. That’s the simplest way to reconcile the many polls showing high opposed numbers with National being re-elected and low turnout at anti-asset sales protests. National has done a good job of promoting the Mighty River shares offer and the $1000 minimum reaches well down the income scale to include most of middle New Zealand. Lots of families have gone from vague “bandwagon effect” opposition to looking at whether buying shares could benefit them. I’m wondering just how large an effect this could have on overall opinion.

    At the moment the evidence is tenuous, it’s at least half wishful thinking… but it would be incredibly amusing if the Green’s CIR ended up with a majority voting in favour of Asset Sales.

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  33. Chuck Bird (4,890 comments) says:

    “National has done a good job of promoting the Mighty River shares offer and the $1000 minimum reaches well down the income scale to include most of middle New Zealand.”

    I heard a share broker on the radio who thought otherwise. He gave a good analogy.

    Let us say a couple is up to the max on credit. The wife loses her job but got one with a lot longer distance to work and her car is on its last legs. The couple decide to sell their boat and buy a more reliable car.

    The opposition point out the the returns on Mighty River are higher than the interest the government pays on what it owes. What they fail to acknowledge is that the interest could easily go up and that in any case if the government paid for new infrastructure by borrowing instead of selling shares in assets our credit rating would be adversely affected.

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  34. duggledog (1,558 comments) says:

    Alex @ 3.30 pm:
    ‘100,000 is about 2.5% of the population, even if that gets up to 10% thats still a pretty exclusive club’

    Yeah Alex, those ass holes. They probably account for quite a bit more than 2.5% of the tax though. Wouldn’t that be right?

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  35. Keeping Stock (10,342 comments) says:

    @Judith (3.12pm) – 390,000 may well have signed the Labour/green petition for a Political Party Initiated Referendum. But it has taken Labour and the Greens eleven months to gather that many signatures, and the petition is yet to be audited. On the other hand, over 150,000 people have registered their interest in the MRP share float in less than two days.

    On balance (something dear to your heart obviously), I’d say it’s a slam dunk to John Key, whilst it’s back to the the drawing board for Labour, the Greens and co.

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  36. kiwigunner (230 comments) says:

    The number registering or buying for that matter should not be taken as support for the policy or that it is best for NZ. Many opposed to the sale will still buy shares because it is a hedge against increased prices to come, they want to continue NZ ownership, it can make them money (this sale has to be priced for investor profits for political reasons and can’t lose because the govt will bail out any losses) or other reasons. But this is quite different to preferring the status quo. As for the registered numbers this is only half of the story of course – it is an exclusive club if it only includes the already rich or well off and excludes the every growing portion of our country that is on the unemployed/low wage/poverty line.

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  37. ross69 (3,652 comments) says:

    if the government paid for new infrastructure by borrowing instead of selling shares in assets our credit rating would be adversely affected.

    Wrong, Chuck. Governments borrow all the time to fund expenditure. It doesn’t affect their credit rating.

    You’ve missed the point that Treasury says NZ’s foreign debt will rise AFTER the assets are sold. Of course we won’t be getting the dividends from those assets, so we won’t be able to service that inreasing debt. That could well affect our credit rating. So, it is selling assets that, more than anything else, is likely to affect our credit rating. On the other hand, this is from the party that brought us Think Big which sunk big. Should we be surprised?

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  38. Manolo (13,783 comments) says:

    ross69, we all know you’re a socialist and die-hard Labour supporter. Enough said.

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  39. ross69 (3,652 comments) says:

    it is an exclusive club if it only includes the already rich or well off and excludes the every growing portion of our country that is on the unemployed/low wage/poverty line.

    How many shares are the latter going to be buying?

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  40. ross69 (3,652 comments) says:

    we all know you’re a socialist and die-hard Labour supporter

    So, Treasury are a bunch of socialists and die-hard Labour supporters?

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  41. ross69 (3,652 comments) says:

    if selling a PARTIAL stake in SOME assets isnt the answer whats your alternative?

    If selling assets is the answer, you’re not asking the right question. :)

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  42. Steady Course (3 comments) says:

    Soooooooo, no credible answer AGAIN, thought as much. Therein lies the lefts problem, they got nothin!

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  43. muggins (3,787 comments) says:

    If New Zealander’s apply for more shares than those that are available then obviously there will be a scale-back and none will be sold overseas.
    Re those petition signers. I wonder how many people signed twice?
    By part selling these assets it means the government does not have to borrow as much money, but by the same token they will not be getting 49% of the profits. But I read where Genesis has only just started paying a dividend again, so the government wasn’t getting any money from Genesis anyway.

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  44. muggins (3,787 comments) says:

    I see the reason why Genesis didn’t pay any dividends in 2011/12 was because of the cost of upgrades,etc.

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  45. rouppe (971 comments) says:

    I’ve ended up having to register twice. First time it didn’t ask me for my intentions in terms of dollars to invest, so I had to register again yesterday.

    So it is possible the registratin numbers have a skew in them

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  46. UpandComer (537 comments) says:

    At Ross 69: It’s somewhat ironic a supporter of a billion free houses in Auckland and the money printer is mocking a previous government’s economic activism. At least in that case we got some power production that people could use. No one is going to want to live in crap houses in the middle of nowhere.

    Also, all the problems with servicing government debt are a result of your parties spending profligacy from 2005. The CA has been in the red ever since then, so naturally we’ve had to increase foreign liabilities and the KFA. You act as if the cost of borrowing is going to stay what it is forever. Gee, I guess it will be just like house prices forever increasing in Detroit so as to make mortgage backed securities a viable CDO. You attack the govt for it’s involvement with Solid Energy, yet at the same time don’t acknowledge that these are inherently risky assets.

    It’s laughable. Most of Labour’s supporters don’t even know what a share is, they just mistrust what they don’t understand. I don’t know what plant you are on if you think that borrowing doesn’t influence a credit rating?! It’s the levels of borrowing. Let’s not forget what the Left want to do, they either want to pretend that we are in an alternative reality where printing money has no bad effects as opposed to merely raising taxes or issuing bonds from the central bank, or they want to once again leave the country in a position where a decade of deficits extrapolates into one endlessly increasing deficit, whilst they ‘pick winners’ like windmills.

    Ross69, until you come up with an alternative to reducing our debt liabilities, it’s all hot air.

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