VN-Index losses narrow as blue chips attract investors

By Hung Le   March 17, 2020 | 03:21 am PT
VN-Index losses narrow as blue chips attract investors
An investor looks at stock boards at a securities company in Ho Chi Minh City. Photo by VnExpress/Huu Khoa.
Cash flow into Vietnam’s 30 biggest stocks narrowed the VN-Index’s losses to 0.28 percent Tuesday, from above 0.9 percent in four previous sessions.

Vietnam’s benchmark index fell 2.08 points to 745.78 points, with 211 tickers gaining and 154 losing on the Ho Chi Minh Stock Exchange (HoSE), on which the VN-Index is based.

The VN-Index had opened with 747.86 points in the morning, and fell as low as 722 points, or 3.5 percent, before an afternoon surge covered most of the fall.

Investors in the afternoon session poured VND2.28 trillion ($98.03 million) into the market via both order-matched and put through transactions, over half of which went to VN30, the basket of Vietnam’s 30 biggest market cap stocks. The VN30-Index rose 0.22 percent, with 19 tickers gaining and 10 losing.

PLX of state-owned petroleum distributor Petrolimex and SSI of brokerage Saigon Securities Inc. led gains this session, adding 6.9 percent and 6.8 percent respectively, and both hitting their ceiling prices.

Banking sector stocks also saw a positive session with all but one of them gaining. Of Vietnam’s three biggest state-owned lenders by assets, BID of BIDV added 3 percent, CTG of VietinBank, 2.4 percent and VCB of Vietcombank, 0.6 percent.

Among private mid-sized banks, the biggest gainers were TCB of Techcombank, up 2.9 percent, VPB of VPBank, up 2.6 percent, and STB of Sacombank, 2.1 percent.

Other major gainers this session included REE of appliances maker Refrigeration Electrical Engineering, which surged 6.6 percent, CTD of construction giant Cotecons, 6 percent, and SBT of agricultural firm TTC-Sugar, 2 percent.

However, stocks related to Vietnam’s biggest private conglomerate Vingroup all lost this session. VIC of Vingroup and VHM of its real estate arm Vinhomes, the two biggest capped stocks on the VN-30, lost 4.3 percent and 2.6 percent respectively, while VRE of retail arm Vincom Retail topped losses, plunging 6.8 percent.

Other major losing blue chips included SAB of major brewer Sabeco, which shed 5.9 percent, VNM of leading dairy firm Vinamilk, down 1 percent, and PNJ of jewelry chain PhuNhuan Jewelry, down 0.5 percent.

According to Le Quang Minh, Head of Research at securities firm Mirae Asset, despite a large amount of cash flowing into the market suddenly in this session, the VN-Index is unlikely to see a sustained recovery because most of this cash came from bottom-fishing investors.

Late March is usually a volatile period for the stock market as many listed firms publish their financial results. With the Covid-19 pandemic hitting businesses across the country, these publications will likely be negative information for the market, he said.

Tuesday was the VN-Index’s fifth consecutive losing session, which lost the market a total of nearly 92 points, equivalent to 10.95 percent.

Meanwhile, the HNX-Index for stocks on Hanoi Stock Exchange, Vietnam’s second main bourse for small and midcap stocks, surged 1.47 percent, and the UPCoM-Index for unlisted public companies added 0.32 percent.

Foreign investors were net sellers for the 26th consecutive session to the tune of VND586 billion ($25.19 million) on all three bourses, with selling pressure focused on the markets’ blue chips. 

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