Local investors watch stock movements at the VNDirect floor in Hanoi (Photo: VNA)

Hanoi (VNA) - Vietnamese shares extended a rally on both local markets on December 30 as banks continued to benefit from foreign purchases.

The benchmark VN Index on the HCM Stock Exchange gained 0.6 percent to close at 579.45 points, extending a rally of 2.7 percent for a fifth day. The index has risen 6.2 percent so far this year.

The HNX Index on the Hanoi Stock Exchange added 0.9 percent to finish at 79.28 points. The northern index has gained 1.9 percent for the last two days. The index has fallen 4.5 percent so far this year.

The banking sector index was up 1.1 percent after foreign investors recorded net buy values for bank stocks.

Vietcombank (VCB) rose 0.7 percent, Vietinbank (CTG) gained 0.5 percent and Sai Gon Hanoi Bank (SHB) jumped 3.3 percent. Inflows from foreign investors occupied half of traded shares in these stocks.

Meanwhile, Sacombank (STB) jumped 5 percent and the Bank for Investment and Development of Vietnam (BID) gained 0.5 percent as foreign purchases accounted for up to 20 percent of traded shares in these stocks.

Other big stocks such as Vingroup JSC (VIC), Sai Gon Hanoi Securities Incorporate (SSI) and Kinh Bac City Development Holdings Corporation (KBC) also contributed to the market rally. These stocks added 1.1 percent, 0.5 percent and 2.3 percent, respectively.

In addition, a stronger Vietnamese dong helped local companies such as construction material producers, IT companies and rubber firms to reduce their input costs, which come from importing materials from overseas suppliers.

The official exchange rate was 22,500 VND per US dollar at local banks on December 30, a decrease of 10 VND from the previous day, and 22,630 VND a dollar in the unofficial market, a decrease of 50 VND.

Local firms that benefited stronger dong included internet, computer and software provider CMC Corporation (CMG), which jumped 4.3 percent, Da Nang Rubber Joint Stock Company (DRC), which rose 1.9 percent, and steel maker Hoa Phat Group JSC (HPG), which gained 1.4 percent.

Both local markets traded more than 138 million shares worth 2 trillion VND (88.4 million USD), a decrease of 14 percent from December 29's trading value.-VNA