Stocks gained slightly on the HCM City Stock Exchange on Feb. 9, with the VN-Index edging up by 0.45 percent over the previous day's session to close at 411.39 points.

The value of trades jumped 20.8 to a total of 771.5 billion VND (36.7 million USD), while volume rose by 15.5 percent to 51.5 million shares.

Of the 10 leading shares by capitalisation, Sacombank (STB) hit its ceiling price, while Eximbank (EIB), software giant FPT, food processor Masan Group (MSN) and Vinamilk (VNM) all posted gains. Others in this group lost value or closed unchanged.

The four-day-old VN30 index, which tracks movements of a basket of leading shares, added 0.8 percent to close at 464.73. The 30 stocks accounted for 365.5 billion VND (17.4 million USD) worth of the day's volume. Three banking stocks – Military Bank (MBB), EIB and STB – were most favoured by investors, each with 3.8 to 4.1 million shares exchanged.

On the Ha Noi Stock Exchange, the HNX-Index edged up 0.13 percent, concluding the session at 63.82 points. Profit-taking boosted volume by 37.6 percent to 56.4 million shares, while value reached 444.3 billion VND (21 million USD).

Habubank (HBB) emerged as the most-active share nationwide with around 9.2 million traded.

The nine listed commercial banks on both bourses have all released their 2011 financial statements, showing profits up an average of 35 percent from 2010. Deposits in these listed banks as of December 31 totalled over 915 trillion VND (43.57 billion USD), up 18 percent over the previous year.

Notably, HBB was the only bank that profited from securities investments, reporting gains of over 385 billion VND (18.3 million USD). Its profits were comparable to the previous year's but it held the dubious honour of the highest rate of bad debts among the nine banks – 4.7 percent.

But the allure of HBB shares to investors was their low price. Buy orders at 5,000-10,000 VND per share occupied much of Feb. 9's session.

Foreign investors continued to be net buyers on both exchanges on Feb. 9, picking a combined net of 79 billion VND (3.76 million) worth of shares. /.