Shares fell on the HCM Stock Exchange on Sept. 20, led by slumps in major stocks, with the VN-Index losing 1.58 percent to close the session at 454.37 points.

Influential caps including insurer Bao Viet Holdings (BVH), food producer Masan Group (MSN) and PetroVietnam Finance (PVF) all dropped to the floor price, while steelmaker Hoa Phat Group (HPG) and software producer FPT (FPT) both lost around 2 percent.

A 4-per-cent rise by property developer Vincom (VIC) cushioned the fall, while Phu My Fertiliser (DPM) and dairy giant Vinamilk (VNM) gained by just under 1 percent each.

Over half of the total codes made losses, with trading value declining 35 percent from Monday to just 886.7 billion VND (42.6 million USD) or 46 million shares.

Becamex Infrastructure Development (IJC) was again the most active stock on the southern bourse with 2.2 million shares traded, although it closed 3.6 percent down at 10,800 VND (0.52 USD).

It was no surprise to see shares slump on Sept. 20, with many investors fearful of being stuck at a new peak following a 13-day rising streak, according to a Hanoi-based analyst who wished to remain anonymous.

The likelihood of macroeconomic stability in September had supported the stock market, he said, however, after a period of strong rises, the market needed some time to adjust while investors continued to monitor economic news and the effectiveness of new monetary policies.

Bao Viet Securities analyst Tran Hai Yen wrote in a report that the short-term uptrend was not completely broken, but in order to maintain the rally, the market needed more information support.

"Meanwhile, concerns over the possibility that electricity prices will increase in September will accelerate inflation again and may have a negative impact on investor psychology," Yen wrote.

September CPI (consumer price index) in Hanoi was reported to rise just 0.2 percent late on Sept. 20.

In Hanoi , the HNX-Index also slid 2.14 percent to finish the day at 74.38 points, with decliners nearly tripling advancers.

Market value rose nearly 12 percent, however, to nearly 489.7 billion VND (23.5 million USD) on a total volume of 42.4 million shares.

Kim Long Securities Co (KLS) was the most heavily-traded stock nationwide with 3.27 million shares changing hands, losing another 0.8 percent to close at 12,400 VND (0.60 USD).

Foreign investors were net sellers on both exchanges on Sept. 20, unloading a combined 20 billion VND (962,000 USD) worth of shares./.