Shares fall following banker arrests

Update: December, 13/2016 - 01:00
Stocks fell yesterday as investor confidence was low after former bankers were arrested and ahead of the US central bank’s meeting this week. — Photo
Viet Nam News

HÀ NỘI — Shares fell on the two local exchanges yesterday as banks suffered from the arrest of top bankers and expectations of a US interest rate hike kept investor confidence low.

The benchmark VN Index on the HCM Stock Exchange retreated 0.5 per cent from a three-day rally of 1.8 per cent to finish at 659.7 points.

The HNX Index on the Hà Nội Stock Exchange was down 1 per cent to end at 78.79 points. The northern stock index gained 0.3 per cent on Friday.

Banks were among the worst-hit sectors after a former chairman and four executives of Dong A Bank were arrested on Friday for violating rules on lending management.

Seven of the nine listed banks ended in the negative territory, including large-cap bank stocks such as Sacombank (STB), Bank for Investment and Development of Việt Nam (BID), Vietinbank (CTG) and Sài Gòn-Hà Nội Bank (SHB).

The decline of bank stocks pulled other leading industries down, including property developers, insurance companies and brokerage firms.

Those sectors were driven down by insurer Bảo Việt Holdings (BVH), real estate firm FLC Group (FLC), Sài Gòn-Hà Nội Securities Corp (SHS) and Sài Gòn Securities Inc (SSI), which fell 2.2 per cent, 6.9 per cent, 4 per cent and 1.3 per cent, respectively.

Other blue chips that incurred losses included dairy firm Vinamilk (VNM), which slid 1.5 per cent after the State Capital Investment Corporation (SCIC) failed to attract foreign investors to buy its ownership in Vinamilk.

Only two foreign investors signed up to purchase 60 per cent of the 130.6 million shares offered by SCIC for total US$500 million, which is seen as disappointing by the market.

Market sentiment was low as investors waited for the US central bank’s meeting this week, in which they expect US interest rates would be raised for the first time since December 2015, BIDV Securities Corp said in a note.

On the monetary market, the US dollar strengthened against other currencies. The State Bank of Việt Nam yesterday set it daily reference mid-point rate at VNĐ22,125 for a dollar, an increase of VNĐ8 from Friday.

On the positive side, the stock market received strong support from energy companies after the Organisation of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) and non-OPEC producers agreed to cut their production for the first time since 2001 as an attempt to boost the global crude prices.

Nearly 159 million shares were exchanged yesterday, worth VNĐ2.73 trillion ($121.48 million). — VNS