In 2020, the COVID-19 pandemic saw prices on most counters decline significantly into bear market territory. The NASI, NSE20 and NSE25 declined by 8.6%, 29.6%, 16.7% to 152.11, 1,868.39 and 3,415.24 respectively at 31st December 2020.
The gradual easing of restrictions in the second half of year created expectations of economic recovery in 2021. This created some optimism in the NSE. As at 26th March 2021(the day of the announcement of the new containment measures), the NASI, NSE 20 Share NSE 25 Share were up by 9.4%, 1.9% and 4.2% to 166.48, 1,903.06 and 3,666.29 YTD respectively.
The third wave of the pandemic saw resumption in movement restrictions and limitations on business activities. These measures were relaxed on 1st May 2020 owing to a decline in the number of positive cases. This has seen the market extend its upward momentum. The NASI and NSE 25 were up by 12.5% and 9.1% while the NSE 20 was down by (0.3%) to 171.09, 3,725.72 and 1,862.50 YTD respectively as at 7th May 2021.
We expect the relaxation of the measures to boost economic recovery though at a gradual pace.