Illustrative photo. (Photo: VNA)

Vietnamese shares were mixed on September 17 while banks fell ahead of a decision by the US Federal Reserve whether to raise interest rates.

The VN Index on the HCM Stock Exchange fell 0.3 percent to close at 562.48 points and the HNX Index on the Hanoi Stock Exchange gained 0.7 percent to finish at 77.22 points.

The local banking sector was down an average of 2.3 percent from September 16.

Of nine listed banks on the Vietnamese stock market, six of them declined, including Vietcombank (VCB), Vietinbank (CTG) and the Bank for Investment and Development of Vietnam (BID), which are among the top ten stocks with the largest market capitalisations.

By the end of the day, VCB fell 0.9 percent, CTG was down 2 percent while BID dropped 6.8 percent on September 17. BID has fallen the last two days after two investment funds – the US-based Market Vector VNM ETF and the Euro-based FTSE Vietnam ETF – announced they would remove BID from their indices in the last quarter of this year.

Besides the banks, other big companies that fell were Bao Viet Holdings (BVH) and Petrovietnam Power Nhon Trach 2 (NT2). These two shares dropped 0.7 percent and 3.2 percent.

On the opposite side, energy firms rose despite a slightly lower global oil price. US benchmark West Texas Intermediate crude on September 17 traded at 47.09 USD a barrel, a decrease of 0.1 percent from September 16.

Petrovietnam Gas Corp (GAS) gained 5.4 percent, Petrovietnam Drilling & Well Services (PVD) was up 2.6 percent and Petroleum Technical Services (PVS) rose 2 percent.

In addition, GAS made such a large gain that the company decided to make the first dividend payment of 1.9 trillion VND (84.2 million USD) on October 23. In the first half of this year, GAS earned a total net profit of 8.93 trillion VND (397 million USD).

Two local bourses on September 17 traded nearly 118 million shares for a trading value of 1.77 trillion VND (78.8 million USD), an increase of 17 percent from September 16.-VNA