|Investors watch stock prices on the MB Securities trading floor. — VNS Photo Trương Vị|
HÀ NỘI — The benchmark VN-Index sank for the first time in the last five sessions on Thursday as oil and gas stocks slumped on the back of global oil losses.
On the HCM Stock Exchange, the VN-Index edged down 0.11 per cent to close at 715.8 points. The southern market index had gained 1.3 per cent in the past five sessions.
Large-cap stocks saw a divergence as major firms like dairy giant Vinamilk (VNM), brewery Sabeco (SAB), insurer Bảo Việt Holdings (BVH) and real estate developer VinGroup (VIC) lost value under high selling pressure.
Due to drops in global oil prices, big energy firms such as PV Gas (GAS), PetroVietnam Drilling and Wells Service (PVD), PetroVietnam Technical Service (PVS) and PetroVietnam Drilling Mud (PVC) declined between 1.7 per cent and 2.4 per cent.
The US West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude was down 5 per cent on Wednesday to US$50.13 per barrel, while Brent crude fell 4.4 per cent to $53.1 a barrel. The heavy losses were attributed to the Energy Information Administration (EIA)’s report showing US crude inventories rose by 8.2 million barrels in the week ending March 3, far exceeding analysts’ expectations for an increase of just two million barrels.
This lifted total US stockpiles to a record of 528.4 million barrels, excluding its strategic petroleum reserves.
However, oil prices slightly increased on Thursday in Asia thanks to positive news concerning the output cut deal of the Organisation of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC).
According to Bảo Việt Securities Co, oil prices are unlikely to drop further as the OPEC output deal is having an impact. “Oil prices may record a slight recovery in the next sessions,” analyst Trần Đức Anh wrote in a report on Thursday.
On the bright side, bank stocks performed well and cushioned the market. Out of nine listed banks, only Eximbank (EIB) and Sacombank (STB) slipped; others increased slightly, led by Military Bank (MBB) up 3.2 per cent while Vietcombank (VCB) and Vietinbank (CTG) rising by less than 1 per cent.
On the Hà Nội Stock Exchange, the HNX-Index extended a rally to three consecutive days, up 0.21 per cent to end at 87.72 points, lifting the three-day growth to 1.3 per cent.
Liquidity remained high with a total of 238 million shares worth a combined VNĐ4.2 trillion ($184.2 million) traded in the two markets.
Foreign investors were net sellers for VNĐ66.3 billion in the HCM City’s market on Thursday but they picked up shares worth a net value of VNĐ4.5 billion on the Hà Nội exchange. — VNS