News of soaring inflation in the nation's two biggest cities during the past month wasn't enough to discourage investors on the HCM Stock Exchange on March 21, as VN-Index rose 1.56 percent over the previous day's session to close at 468.25 points.

Over the weekend, the HCM City General Statistics Office of reported that, in March, consumer prices rose 2.2 percent in the city over February's levels, while in Hanoi, the figure released was an even more stunning 2.4 percent.

Blue chips rose by over 2 percent overall, giving strong support to the VN-Index, according to analysts of Tai Viet Securities Co, with financial conglomerate Ocean Group (OGC) up 4.8 percent, Masan Group (MSN) up 4.5 percent, insurer Bao Viet Holdings (BVH) up 2 percent, PetroVietnam Finance (PVF) up 1.9 percent, and Phu My Fertilisers (DPM) up 0.8 percent.

Stocks that reached their ceiling prices included resort developer VinpearlLand (VPL), property developer Hoang Anh Gia Lai (HAG), coffee producer Vinacafe Bien Hoa (VCF), and Construction Co No 5.

The volume of trades, meanwhile, fell 22 percent from March 18's session to 41.7 million shares, worth just 868 billion VND (40.4 million USD).

On the Hanoi Stock Exchange, the HNX-Index closed down 0.39 percent to 94.84 points although advancing shares managed to outnumber decliners by 187-100. The volume of trades fell 16 percent from Friday to 44.6 million shares, worth a combined value of 717.4 billion VND (33.6 million USD).

Foreign investors on March 21 continued to be net sellers in both exchanges, selling a combined net of 1.7 million shares, worth a net of 31 billion VND (1.4 million USD)./.