An investor watches market movements at the BIDV Securities Corp (Photo: VNA)

Hanoi (VNA) - Vietnamese shares ended with mixed results on the two local exchanges on May 24 while investors remained cautious as local markets lacked supporting information.

The benchmark VN Index on the HCM Stock Exchange struggled to inch up 0.1 percent to finish at 611.62 points, putting a dent to a four-day decline of 2.2 percent.

However, the HNX Index on the Hanoi Stock Exchange ended slightly lower at 81.26 points, maintaining a loss of 1.1 percent for a fifth day.

“Investors remained cautious as they saw little supporting information on the markets and investors’ demand for recently-declining stocks was not high,” Bao Viet Securities Corp (BVSC) wrote in its daily report.

Investors remained cautious after the possibility of a US interest rate increase next month became firm following recent statements made by the US central bank’s officials.

The concern over the interest rate increase has strengthened the US dollar against other currencies on global markets recently and forced local central banks, including Vietnam’s central bank, to weaken their currencies to keep foreign investors in local markets.

On May 24, the daily reference mid-point rate set by the central bank for commercial banks’ trading between the dollar and the Vietnamese dong decreased by 3 VND to 21,910 VND for a dollar.

The mid-point rate has remained high amid fears the US central bank will make its first rate hike since December in June.

Additionally, the Consumer Price Index (CPI) for May added 0.5 percent to that of April. The increased CPI may generate inflation this year and prevent the central bank from lowering the lending rate for local companies, BVSC said.

Out of 20 sectors, energy and insurance sectors were the major factors helping lift the markets.

The energy sector was driven up by PetroVietnam Mud Drilling Corp (PVC), PetroVietnam Drilling and Well Service Corp (PVD) and PetroVietnam Technical Service Corp (PVS).

PVS gained 1.1 percent, PVC 2.2 percent and PVD 2.5 percent.

Other large-cap stocks such as insurer Bao Viet Holdings (BVH), consumer goods producer Masan Group (MSN), Vietinbank (CTG) and Kim Long Securities Corp (KLS) also made gains.

On the opposite side, dairy firm Vinamilk (VNM), Vietcombank (VCB), Saigon-Hanoi Bank (SHB) and Tien Phong Plastic JSC (NTP) continued to weigh on both exchanges. These stocks lost between 0.2 percent and 1.5 percent.

Both local exchanges traded more than 150 million shares worth 2.56 trillion VND (113.8 million USD), an increase of one-tenth from the previous session.-VNA