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VietNamNews

Scandal fallout clouds market

Update: August, 23/2012 - 09:04

HA NOI — Declining shares for a second day on the nation's stock exchanges yesterday confirmed the fears of analysts that the arrest of banking tycoon Nguyen Duc Kien on fraud charges would continue to have a negative impact on the market.

On the HCM City Stock Exchange, the VN-Index lost another 1.6 per cent on top of Tuesday's steep decline to close at 410.23 points. Decliners outnumbered advancers by almost four-to-one.

The value of trades remained high due to heavy sell volumes, reaching VND1 trillion (US$47.6 million) on a volume of over 74 million shares.

Many blue chips bottomed out. Of the exchange's leading shares tracked by the VN30 Index, 13 plunged to their floor prices – and over half of those were financial stocks. Only four codes in the VN30 basket managed to add value: Phu My Fertilisers (DPM), commercial baker Kinh Do (KDC), PetroVietnam Drilling Services Co (PVD), and Vinamilk (VNM). The VN30 closed down by 2 per cent to 486.32 points.

Despite all the red, yesterday's declines were less dramatic than Tuesday's, suggesting that the worst of the impact was over, said HCM City Securities Co's head of analysis, Fiachra Mac Cana, who expected buyers to return today.

"From a medium-term perspective, [the arrest] looks like the beginning of a clean-up and a clear message that any activity which ignores the law will not be tolerated," Mac Cana wrote in a note.

On the Ha Noi Stock Exchange, the HNX-Index plummeted by another 3.4 per cent to conclude yesterday's session at 64.65 points, with nearly half of all codes retreating. The overall value of trades totalled VND535 billion ($25.4 million) on a volume of 61 million shares.

Asia Commercial Bank (ACB), of which Kien was a co-founder, continued to hit fall to its floor price amid heavy selling.

The HNX30, representing the capital city's top shares, fell 4.15 per cent to 121.73 points.

VNDirect Securities Co (VND) was the most-active share, with 7 million traded.

Nervous investors began to shift capital into gold, pushing the precious metal yesterday to its highest level since April. Prices posted by Sai Gon Jewelry Co and Bao Tin Minh Chau Jewelry Co rose by VND600,000-700,000 ($28-33) per tael to around VND42.2-43.7 million (about $2,000). One tael equal 1.2 ounces.

While investors have yet to regain confidence in the market, rising global oil prices also stirred fears of a fourth hike in domestic petrol prices in as many months. Petrol distributors were already complaining of losses of around VND1,000 per litre.

"If world prices keep on going up but we halt any increases, petrol businesses be in even more of a bind," said Petrolimex Group deputy director Tran Ngoc Nam. — VNS

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