Stocks advanced steadily April 2 afternoon, fuelled by a strong blue chip recovery.

On the Hochiminh Stock Exchange, the VN-Index rose nearly 8 points to close the session at 546.85 points. The VN30, which tracks the top 30 shares by market value and liquidity, added 1.17 percent to end at 576.13 points.

Blue chips led market gains, with 19 stocks in the VN30 gaining over 1 percent, while the other 11 jumped more than 2 percent.

Financial and banking stocks were the biggest gainers. Insurer Bao Viet Holdings (BVH) and Ocean Group (OGC) hit their ceiling prices, while lenders BIDV (BID) and Vietinbank (CTG) rose 3.5 percent and 2.9 percent, respectively.

However, waning liquidity continued to be a major concern which could prevent the market from a stable uptrend.

Both market volume and value declined 30 percent from the previous session, totalling just 90 million shares worth 1.4 trillion VND (65.4 million USD).

Only 19 out of 308 stocks across the market saw trading rise above 1 million shares, with FLC Group (FLC) leading the way with 13.5 million shares traded. FLC finished up 1 percent to end at 10,600 VND (50 US cents).

On the Hanoi Stock Exchange, the HNX-Index also gained 1.4 percent to finish the session at 81.60 points.

With 24 shares rising over 1 percent and 16 growing over 2 percent, the HNX30 which tracks performance of the biggest stocks in terms of liquidity here jumped 2.15 percent to finish at 153.64 points.

Cautious sentiment also drove liquidity down here, with just 33 million shares worth 412 billion VND (19.3 million USD) traded by the end of the session.

F.I.T Investment Co (FIT) continued to be the most active code in Hanoi with 4.7 million shares exchanged, pushing KLF Joint Venture Global Investment Co (CO) into second place.

Foreign investors remained net buyers in the two markets on April 2, but their net value dropped to just 8.4 billion VND (393,000 USD), a fall of 85 percent compared with the previous day.-VNA