Shares in Australian health insurer Medibank Private debuted at a premium to their issue price on Tuesday after raising A$5.7 billion ($4.91 billion) in Asia's biggest initial public offering in two years.
The shares first traded at A$2.22 at 0100 GMT, a premium of 3 percent for institutional investors in the initial public offering and 11 percent for retail investors, who received 60 percent of the company. The broader market fell 0.8 percent.
The solid performance by Australia's biggest listing of a state-owned firm in 18 years reflects investor appetite for exposure to the country's health system, which is propped up by an ageing population, two decades of continuous personal wealth accumulation and generous state subsidies.
Adding to Medibank's appeal, institutions running index funds will be obliged to buy the shares, pushing them even higher, because the company will join the benchmark S&P 200 index in January while they own relatively little of it.