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Wed 7 Mar 2012 06:02 PM

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Qatar Exchange to launch two new indices

Country's bourse says Total Return, All Share indices will give investors better visibility

Qatar Exchange to launch two new indices
Qatari investor stock exchange

Qatar Exchange will launch two new indices in early April, a total return index and an all share index, as well as revised sector index criteria, the country's bourse said on Wednesday.

The new Total Return index will track both share prices and dividend distribution. The exchange already publishes an index of the country's 20 largest companies, which only tracks share price information.

The new All Share index will include all listed companies with share velocity greater than one percent, the exchange's chief executive Andre Went told a news conference in Doha.

"The new total returns index will give investors better visibility and encourage them to reinvest dividends into their portfolios," Went said.

Seven new sector indices, including transportation, real estate, telecom and consumer goods and services will also be launched.

"The launch of new indices and changes to the index methodology is the first step towards further product development in the Qatari market. New products like exchange-traded funds (ETFs) require availability of investable benchmark indices," said Mohsin Mujtaba, director of product and market development.

The country's bourse will launch ETF trading before the end of the year, Went said.

Qatar's exchange has been preparing to deepen its product offering for many months, but has proceeded cautiously. Qatari Treasury bills began trading on the Gulf state's bourse in late December. It also plans to introduce market makers to increase liquidity, Went said last month.

It is in the first phase of a five-year plan launched in June 2009, including the reform of the cash market, followed by the possibility of central counterparty and derivatives trading, and international business development in the final phase.

The exchange will publish the list of indexed companies for the new indices on March 19, with the indexes to be activated on April 1, Went said.

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