The proposed mandatory health cover requirement yesterday buoyed the insurance sector, lifting the sentiments in the Qatar Stock Exchange whose index surpassed the 10,100 levels.
Foreign funds turned extremely bullish as the 20-stock Qatar Index soared 168 points, or 1.69%, to 10,120.67 points, having recovered from an intraday low of 10,027 points, also reflecting the rally in the world oil prices.
"Once implemented, Qatar’s mandatory health cover for residents and visitors will result in significant growth opportunities for insurers. These growth opportunities will further be bolstered by the increased awareness and demand for healthcare caused by the current pandemic as well as the prospective influx of workers and visitors for and around the FIFA World Cup 2022,” said Mohamed Londe, an analyst with Moody's, a leading global credit rating agency.
The transport, telecom, industrials and banking counters also witnessed higher than average demand in the bourse, whose capitalisation saw about QR9bn, or 1.5%, increase to QR587.89bn, mainly on account of large and midcap segments.
About 81% of the traded constituents extended gains in the bourse, whose year-to-date losses narrowed to 3.02%.
The domestic institutions were seen increasingly net buyers and there was weakened net selling by foreign individuals in the bourse, which saw the Arab funds increasingly into net buying.
The Islamic index was seen gaining slower than the other indices in the bourse, which saw the local retail investors increasingly into net profit booking.
Trade turnover and volumes were on the increase in the market, where the industrials and banking sectors together accounted for more than 66% of the trading volume.
A total of 2.51mn exchange traded funds (Masraf Al Rayan-sponsored QATR and Doha Bank-sponsored QETF) valued at QR6.74mn changed hands across 356 deals; while in the debt market, there was no trading of sovereign bonds and treasury bills.
The Total Return Index gained 1.69% to 19,590.13 points, the Al Rayan Islamic Index (Price) by 0.89% to 2,316.19 points and the All Share Index by 1.72% to 3,144.72 points.
The insurance sector index shot up 6.19%, transport (2.77%), telecom (2.42%), industrials (2.06%), banks and financial services (1.49%) and consumer goods and services (0.33%); while real estate was down 0.03%.
Major gainers included QLM, Qatar Insurance, Al Khaleej Takaful, Doha Insurance, Qatar General Insurance and Reinsurance, Industries Qatar, Gulf International Services, Milaha, Nakilat, Ooredoo, Qatar Industrial Manufacturing, Qatari Investors Group and Investment Holding Group; even as Vodafone Qatar, Ezdan, Qatar National Cement, Commercial Bank and Al Meera were among the losers.
The foreign institutions turned net buyers to the tune of QR80.33mn against net sellers of QR8.4mn on February 24.
The domestic funds’ net buying grew marginally to QR15.03mn compared to QR14.41mn the previous day.
The Arab funds’ net buying increased notably to QR0.37mn against mere QR4mn on Wednesday.
The foreign individuals’ net selling declined considerably to QR0.4mn compared to QR8.36mn on February 24.
However, Qatari investors’ net profit booking grew substantially to QR84.71mn against QR0.21mn the previous day.
The Arab individuals’ net selling also strengthened perceptibly to QR6.52mn compared to QR4.8mn on Wednesday.
The Gulf individuals were net sellers to the extent of QR3.58mn against net buyers of QR0.05mn on February 24.
The Gulf funds turned net profit takers to the tune of QR0.56mn compared with net buyers of QR7.37mn the previous day.
Total trade volume grew 53% to 306.83mn shares, value by 58% to QR795.38mn and transactions by 49% to 17,859.
The telecom sector’s trade volume almost tripled to 22.33mn equities, value soared 60% to QR53.19mn and deals by 7% to 1,550.
The insurance sector’s trade volume more than doubled to 19mn stocks and value almost tripled to QR49.99mn on more-than-doubled transactions to 887.
The realty sector’s trade volume almost doubled to 32.29mn shares, value shot up 81% to QR53.76mn and deals by 74% to 1,595.
The banks and financial services sector saw a 71% surge in trade volume to 56.91mn equities, 52% in value to QR332.96mn and 69% in transactions to 6,189.
The industrials sector’s trade volume expanded 50% to 146.62mn stocks, value by 74% to QR214.56mn and deals by 46% to 4,919.
There was a 4% jump in the transport sector’s trade volume to 9.28mn shares but on a 11% decline in value to QR34.4mn despite 6% higher transactions at 1,083.
However, the consumer goods and services sector’s trade volume tanked 26% to 20.39n equities, whereas value grew 31% to QR56.52mn and deals by 36% to 1,636.