Illustrative image (Photo: VNA)
Hanoi (VNA) - Vietnamese shares were mixed on the two local exchanges on December 21, while foreign investors sold assets in blue chips fearing lower profits after the US Federal Reserve's rate hike last week.

The benchmark VN Index on the HCM Stock Exchange inched down 0.2 percent to close at 566.90 points while the HNX Index on the Hanoi Stock Exchange rose 0.6 percent to end at 78.72 points.

Investors kept selling stocks assets after the US central bank made a rate hike last week, which would strengthen the US dollar against the Vietnamese dong, and require Vietnam's central bank to further depreciate its currency to keep the economy attractive to foreign investors.

The official exchange rate yesterday was 22,547 VND per dollar for local commercial banks while the unofficial market rate was 22,750 VND per dollar.

Foreign investors sold assets in the biggest stocks, including dairy producer Vinamilk, energy firm PetroVietnam Gas Corporation, food and beverage producer Masan Group, and the Bank for Investment and Development of Vietnam (BIDV).

At the end of the session, Vinamilk (VNM) lost 2.3 percent, PetroVietnam Gas Corporation (GAS) fell 2.4 percent, Masan Group (MSN) dropped sharply 4.2 percent and BIDV (BID) was down 2.8 percent.

Other big stocks that contributed to the market decline included Hoa Phat Group Joint Stock Company (HPG), Saigon Securities Incorporation (SSI) and FPT Corporation (FPT), which were down 1.3 percent, 2.2 percent and 0.8 percent, respectively.

On the other side, the market was lifted by real-estate stocks, whose index rose 2.3 percent as they were able to attract investors' attention.

The two biggest property developers Vingroup JSC (VIC) and FLC Group (FLC) jumped 3.8 percent, Kinh Bac City Development Holding Corporation (KBC) surged 4.9 percent and Tan Tao Investment Industrial JSC (ITA) gained 1.8 percent.

Two of the biggest stocks, Bao Viet Holdings (BVH) and Vietcombank (VCB), also helped the market from dropping further. BVH gained 3 percent and VCB rose 3.2 percent.

The two local bourses traded more than 168 million shares worth 2.5 trillion VND (111.5 million USD), a decrease of 15.5 percent from last week's daily trading value.-VNA