Trading showed no signs of improvement on the two stock exchanges on August 2, but blue chips continued to sustain the market.

On the HCM City Stock Exchange, the VN-Index closed 0.45 per cent higher on August 2 at 494.66 points with advancers doubling decliners.

Trading remained dry with 26.3 million shares worth 491 billion VND (23.4 million USD) changing hands during the session, down 16.5 percent in volume and 20 percent in value compared with a day earlier.

The power price hike had no impacts on major shares, with trading in the top 30 shares by market capitalisation and liquidity accounting for over half of the total market value at 297 billion VND (14.1 million USD).

The VN30 also increased 0.37 percent to 545.59 points.

Shares in power companies which gained value on August 1 following the news of the electricity price hike started to decline on August 2.

Khanh Hoa Power (KHP) fell 0.8 percent while thermal power companies Pha Lai (PPC) and Ba Ria (BTP) lost 0.43 percent and 0.65 percent, respectively.

According to stock analysts at BIDV Securities Co., the increase in power prices would not immediately affect the profits of electricity companies as they are stuck in contracts with the Electricity of Vietnam. However, risk-taking investors might be tempted by reliable power firms.

A member of the VN30, Refrigeration Electrical Engineering Corp. (REE), was the most active code on August 2 with 2.5 million shares traded valued at 25,700 VND (1.22 USD) each.

On the Hanoi Stock Exchange, the HNX-Index also climbed 0.94 percent to close on 62.20 points, but the value of trading declined 28 percent from August 1 to just 80.6 billion VND (3.8 million USD).

PetroVietnam Construction (PVX) was the most active code with 1.2 million shares changing hands, the only stock to break the 1 million mark. PVX rose 2.2 percent to 4,600 USD.

Rising inflation is expected in August following price rises in gas, electricity and healthcare services. Stock analysts at PV Securities Co. said if inflation jumped, it would have a negative impact on domestic demand and reduce purchasing power.

Foreign investors concluded on August 2 as net buyers on both markets, picking up shares worth a combined 25.6 billion VND (1.2 million USD).-VNA