Although many securities firms forecast the market would decline on February 28, the benchmark indices edged up at the end of the day's trading, despite decreasing in the morning trading session.

On the Ho Chi Minh City Exchange, the VN-Index rose marginally by 0.29 percent to end the day at 586.48 points.

Masan Group (MSN) helped the benchmark index to avoid a loss yesterday by gaining 4,000 VND (0.19 USD) per share to close at 102,000 VND (4.8 USD).

Liquidity eased to a four-day low as investors became more cautious. About 119.4 million shares were traded, still a high figure, with a total value of 2.2 trillion VND (104 million USD).

The performance of blue chips was mixed and losers at 16 outnumbered gainers at 13.

However, stocks of MSN, PetroVietnam Drilling Corporation (PVD), Hoa Sen Group (HSG) and FPT Group (FPT) surged, helping the VN30-Index to increase 0.16 percent to close the day at 663.81 points.

The benchmark index also received a boost from Ho Chi Minh City Infrastructure Investment Joint Stock Company (CII), which rose to its ceiling price of 25,600 VND (1.2 USD) with a rise of 1,600 VND (0.076 USD) per share.

Profit-taking occurred on blue chips, such as real estate giant Vingroup (VIC), PetroVietnam Low Pressure Gas Distribution (PGD) and Hoa Phat Group (HPG).

Meanwhile, performance in banking sector stocks were mixed yesterday. Share prices of Vietinbank (CTG) and Vietcombank (VCB) rose, while stocks of Eximbank (EIB), Military Bank (MBB) and Sacombank (STB) declined. However, foreign investors boosted buying of bank stocks in the morning trading session, including CTG, STB and BIDV (BID).

On the Ha Noi Exchange, shares recovered in the afternoon trading session and the HNX-Index closed 0.59 percent higher to reach 83.12 points.

The HNXFF-Index, composed of stocks with a minimum free-float rate of 5 percent, rose 0.51 points to end the day at 82.64 points.

However, liquidity eased compared to the previous trading days and 77 million shares were traded. About 731 billion VND (34.8 million USD) was injected into the market, nearly 30 percent lower than Thursday's trading.

The HNX30-Index closed the day at 166.08 points and posted a rise of 0.75 percent.

PetroVietnam Construction Joint Stock Corporation (PVX) remained the most active stock on the northern bourse, with 12.3 million shares traded.

According to FPT Securities, Thursday's decline on both the bourses was an adjustment as investors sold stocks for short-term profits.

As the macro-economy remained on track and foreign investors continued to inject capital into the stock market, the market will maintain the positive trend next week.

CNBC on February 28 published a story entitled "If Vietnam's banks are troubled, why are its shares up?" The story pointed out that Vietnam 's shares have attracted investors and the benchmark VN Index has risen 17 percent this year, and 6 percent in February.

However, CNBC said Vietnam 's banking system continued to be a source of concern; it quoted Moody's report last week that at least 15 percent of the banks' total assets are likely to be non-performing, much more than the 4.7 percent non-performing loan (NPL) ratio estimated by the State Bank of Vietnam in October.-VNA