The Saigon Securities Inc (SSI) has forecast a brighter future for the local stock market, powered by gradual economic recovery and the ongoing reforms.

It believes that the VN Index might reach 590-600 points by the end of this year.

SSI's market outlook, issued in January 2014, estimates that the VN Index can increase by 17 to 20 percent compared with its closing level of 504.6 at the end of last year.

It says that the local market will be powered by gradual economic improvement and the ongoing reforms, which will trigger positive catalysts such as the extension of Foreign Ownership Limit, new IPOs or mergers and acquisitions of banks.

It also says that industry and related sectors such as infrastructure construction, building materials and industrial wharfs are the preferred sectors this year.

According to its calculation, with a 5 percent dividend yield added, the average total return from Vietnam's equity market would be 23 percent in 2014, and the turnaround stocks are attractive as many turnaround companies have just transitioned from ‘loss' to ‘profit-making' status.

The SSI also forecast better revenue growth with support from lower Corporation Income Tax, down from 25 percent in 2013 to 22 percent in 2014, no salary cuts and a slightly lower interest rate in 2014.-VNA