There's no question these decisions were market sensitive. The impact was dramatic: the kiwi dollar jumped a quarter of a US cent, a big move relative to its prevailing tight trading ranges at the time, and the share prices of three of the four Australian banks and the sole NZX-listed bank, Heartland Group, all rose.
Heartland Group Holdings lifted first-half net profit 20.4 per cent, although that was boosted by accounting changes and fair value gains and the underlying increase was closer to 7 per cent. The company, which operates Heartland Bank in New Zealand and a reverse mortgage business in Australia, also increased its first-half dividend to 4.5 cents per share from 3.5 cents last year.
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