Shares in Mighty River Power have started trading this afternoon on the NZX at $2.73 each - a 23c or 9.2 per cent premium on the listing price.
Market expectations were for the stock to list at a premium because of the extent of unsatisfied demand from institutions.
Financial market sources said the Government was keen to see Mighty River shares trade at a premium to their issue price because a positive performance would help pave the way for the partial privatisations of the state's other generator-retailers - Meridian and Genesis.
Mighty River's issue price was set slightly below the mid-point of an indicative $2.35 to $2.80 range set by the Government.
Controversy surrounding plans by the Labour Party and the Greens' plan to introduce a "single buyer" power purchasing model - should they form a government - meant final pricing expectations had to be bumped down to the lower end of the indicative range.
There's no denying that some potential investors were scared of by Labour and the Greens NZ Power policy release. And that, of course was the intent. Act Party president and former MP John Boscawen pulled no punches with this tweet this morning:
Boscawen is dead right, and the gloating especially of Green co-leader Russel Norman has been appalling. Voters need to ask themselves just what Russel Norman's motives were over this whole issue.
However those investors who weren't scared off by the Labour/Green threats of economic sabotage will be pleased to see that their investment is already worth 9% more than when the price was announced on Tuesday night. Couple that with the lower-than-expected share price meaning investors got more bang for their bucks, and those people willing to put their money where their mouths were and invest in New Zealand's future (ourselves included) are being rewarded for their aspiration.
Bring on the next float. Having spent more than we originally intended in MRP shares as a gesture of defiance to David and Russel, our investment will be at the lower end of the scale. But we believe in New Zealand, and we believe in getting ahead. Investing directly in New Zealand's future via the Future Investment Fund is one way that we can achieve that.