|Investors follow transactions at the Bao Viet Securities Company in Ha Noi. Experts say the market will see a slight improvement this month. — VNA/VNS Photo Tran Viet
HA NOI (VNS) — Bank stocks were the main players throughout last week's trading, with their strong growth pushing the two markets up.
All large cap shares, including those of Vietcombank (VCB), Eximbank (EIB), Military Bank (MBB), Sacombank (STB), Bank for Investment and Development of Viet Nam (BID) in HCM City, Sai Gon-Ha Noi Bank (SHB), and Asia Commercial Bank (ACB) in Ha Noi, rose substantially following information that the central bank hiked the US$-VND exchange rate by 1 per cent on Tuesday.
This is the first depreciation of the Vietnamese dong this year. According to the State Bank, this move was aimed at bringing the market in line with the international and domestic financial market climates and at stabilising the forex market.
Last month, the governor of the central bank said that the foreign exchange rate would be adjusted by no more than 2 per cent this year.
Since late 2014, the value of the greenback has risen strongly, as compared to other major currencies, including the euro, British pound and Japanese yen.
On the HCM Stock Exchange, the VN-Index increased by 4.42 per cent during the course of the week, ending at 569.73 points on Friday's session. The VN30, which tracks the top 30 shares by market value and liquidity, also surged by 3.3 per cent to close at 618.41 points.
Besides bank stocks, a rebound of oil and gas stocks also contributed to the market rally last week.
The biggest stock in terms of market value, PV Gas (GAS), made gains in the last three sessions, wherein it hit the ceiling price of VND74,000 ($3.46) per share on Friday, following news that the company will buy back 10 million shares with the maximum price of VND100,000 ($4.67) per share this quarter.
PetroVietnam Drilling and Wells Service Corp (PVD) also climbed by more than 5 per cent on Friday, despite the continued decline of global oil prices last week.
However, liquidity was less as compared to the previous week, with the daily market volume reaching over 101 million shares worth VND1.7 trillion ($79.4 million).
Moreover, on the Ha Noi Stock Exchange, the HNX-Index rose by 3.21 per cent to finish the week at 85.65 points. Nearly 52 million shares worth VND669 billion ($31.3 million) per session were traded in the week.
Furthermore, both markets saw a mix of foreign investors over the course of last week. They were net sellers on the HCM City bourse, unloading shares worth some VND82 billion ($3.8 million), but remained net buyers throughout the week with a combined net buy value of VND43.4 billion ($2 million).
Analysts at the financial company Vietstock predict that the market will see a slight improvement this month, supported by the positive performance of listed companies in the fourth quarter of 2014, which will be released mid-January.
In addition, businesses are expected to benefit from the declining interest expenses and lower fuel costs, and investments will most likely flow in blue chips, particularly stocks in the consumer, real estate and construction sectors. — VNS