VN stocks largely spared from trade war worries

May 24, 2019 - 07:17

Vietnamese shares limited losses as investors tried to buy up local assets as uncertainty caused by the US-China trade tensions overshadowed global markets.

Workers from Lâm Thao Fertilizers and Chemicals JSC (LAS) in the northern province of Phú Thọ load fertiliser onto a truck. Shares of LAS rose 1.19 per cent on Thursday to trade at VNĐ8,500. — VNA/VNS Photo Huy Hùng

HÀ NỘI – Vietnamese shares limited losses with investors buying up local assets as uncertainty caused by the US-China trade tensions cast a shadow over global markets.

The benchmark VN-Index on the Hồ Chí Minh Stock Exchange inched down 0.11 per cent to close at 982.71 points.

The VN-Index declined as much as 0.67 per cent during the day before rebounding to limit losses. It has totalled a three-day loss of 0.45 per cent.

The HNX-Index on the Hà Nội Stock Exchange advanced 0.16 per cent to end at 106.30 points.

The northern market index had decreased by a total of 0.18 per cent in the previous two trading days.

Nearly 190.7 million shares were traded on the two exchanges, worth VNĐ4.76 trillion (US$204.7 million).

The Vietnamese stock market continued to be weighed down by selling pressure as investors were trying to earn profits from the market’s previous gains, which had put a number of stocks at their "expected price levels”, Thành Công Securities Co (TCSC) said in its daily report.

The VN-Index rallied and gained 4.23 per cent in seven straight trading days between May 9 and May 20.

“Investors were also cautious and pessimistic towards the unpredictability of the world’s economic and political developments,” TCSC said.

Trade worries may have also been behind the sales of Vietnamese assets by foreign investors. On Thursday, foreign investors net-sold a total of VNĐ166 billion on the HCM City and Hà Nội markets even as overall losses on the benchmark southern index were minimal.

“Large-cap stocks kept pressuring the market growth, so capital started switching to mid- and small-cap stocks,” MB Securities Co (MBS) said in a note.

Shares of chemical firms performed well on Thursday.

“Perhaps the divestment plans of State-owned enterprises (SOEs) in chemical firms were the main driving factor for their strong increases,” MBS said.

On the equity market, most fertiliser and chemical producers are members of the Vietnam National Chemical Group (Vinachem) and the Vietnam National Oil and Gas Group (PVN).

The two State-owned giants have been planning to sell the State capital in smaller chemical and fertiliser firms in recent years.

Among chemical stocks, Lâm Thao Fertilisers and Chemicals JSC (LAS) gained 1.2 per cent and PetroVietnam Chemicals and Fertilisers Corp (DPM) soared 5.7 per cent.

Thursday's declines may suggest the market has ended its correction phase as selling pressure was not strong enough to make the VN-Index drop below its support level of 980 points, MBS said.

“There are opportunities for investors to buy in stocks with supportive information,” MBS said. “Any decline or correction will be a chance for investors to overhaul their portfolios.” VNS