Hanoi Stock Exchange staff (Photo: VNA)

Hanoi (VNA) - Shares slowed growth in August 3 afternoon trade on rising investor caution when the benchmark VN-Index touched short-term resistance.

The VN-Index on the HCM Stock Exchange retreated below 790 points recorded in the morning but still edged up 0.29 percent to close at 788.49 points.

Some large-cap stocks declined and restrained the market uptrend.

Fifteen of the top 30 largest shares by market value and liquidity gained value, fewer than 21 in the morning, while seven tumbled.

“The VN-Index retained the level of 790 points in a fairly short time and lost points early in the afternoon session, which showed the cash flow was quite cautious in this area,” market analysts at BIDV Securities Co (BSC) wrote in the August 3 note.

Sacombank lost the morning gain and dropped 2 percent in afternoon trade, settling at 12,300 VND (0.54 USD) a share, its third decline following the detention of two of its former bankers, with a total decrease of 6.2 percent over three sessions.

The bank posted pre-tax combined profits of 754 billion VND (33.2 million USD) in the first seven months of this year, up 29 percent over the target set for the whole year.

However, other banks recovered. Eximbank (EIB) increased 4.8 percent while BIDV (BID) and Vietcombank (VCB) ticked up 2 percent and 0.5 percent, respectively. Military Bank (MBB) and Vietinbank (CTG) bounced back to their reference prices.

Gainers also included Vinamilk (VNM), Masan Group (MSN), FPT Corp (FPT), Mobile World Group (MWG) and PetroVietnam Drilling and Wells Service (PVD).

[Infographics: Vietnam's stock market in first 7 months of 2017]

On the defensive side, insurer Bao Viet Holdings (BDVH), brewery Sabeco (SAB) and Hau Giang Pharmaceutical (DHG) slumped.

BSC predicts the market may trade around 785-788 points and continue to test the resistance of 790 points in the next few sessions.

On the Hanoi Stock Exchange, the HNX-Index picked up 0.46 percent to end at 101.44 points.

A total of 285.4 million shares worth 5 trillion VND (220.3 million USD) were traded in the two markets, down 4.2 percent in volume but up 5.3 percent in value compared to the previous session.

Foreign investors kept positive trading on the HCM City market, with an 11th net buying session for a value of 162 billion VND, up 10.7 percent over the previous trade. They concluded as net sellers for a third day on the Hanoi’s exchange for 1 billion VND, almost half of Wednesday’s value.-VNA