(Updated)

Glove share price rise nudges healthcare gauge to highest in two months

Glove share price rise nudges healthcare gauge to highest in two months
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KUALA LUMPUR (Oct 26): Bursa Malaysia's Health Care index rose more than 3% past 1,600 points to its highest in over two months, helped mainly by the rise in share prices of rubber glove manufacturers, including Top Glove Corp Bhd, Hartalega Holdings Bhd, Supermax Corp Bhd and Kossan Rubber Industries Bhd.

At 5pm, the Health Care Index, which also tracks share prices of pharmaceutical companies and hospital operators, rose 60.56 points or 3.82% to 1,644.83 — marking its highest level since Aug 11, 2022, when it was traded at 1,650.59.

The glove counters closed near or at intra-day highs in active trade. After months of sell-off to below pre-pandemic lows, the sector has seen bargain hunting in recent days on investor perception towards the exporting sector as a beneficiary of a strengthening US dollar.

Top Glove was the second most active counter on Wednesday with 113.49 million shares traded, up 57% from its two-month average of 72.24 million shares.

The counter closed near its intra-day high of 76 sen, up four sen or 5.59% higher at 75.5 sen, giving it a market capitalisation of RM6.20 billion.

Meanwhile, Hartalega ended the session at its intra-day high of RM2.07, up 22 sen or 11.89%. At RM2.07, it had a market capitalisation of RM7.10 billion. The last time Hartalega's share price touched the RM2 level was on Aug 12, 2022.

Lower liner Careplus Group Bhd was the fifth top active counter, as trading volume surged seven-fold to 60.4 million shares, from 8.38 million shares. The counter ended five sen or 12.66% higher at 44.5 sen, extending its one-month gain to 89%.

Other glovemakers also rose. Supermax climbed up seven sen or 8.14% to settle at 93 sen, translating into market value of RM2.53 billion, while Kossan rose nine sen or 7.96% to RM1.22, bringing it a market capitalisation of RM3.12 billion.

Comfort Gloves Bhd closed 5.5 sen or 11.22% higher at 54.5 sen, while Hextar Healthcare Bhd (previously known as Rubberex Corp (M) Bhd) settled 2.5 sen or 5.95% higher at 44.5 sen.