The two national stock exchanges’ proposed plan to extend trading hours in the afternoon session to help boost liquidity and lure investors is drawing differing opinions from market participants.

Leaders of both exchanges confirmed they had submitted documents to the State Securities Commission (SSC), asking to extend afternoon trading hours by 45 minutes to end at 3pm.

This proposal was made following investor complaints that one trading hour in the afternoon was too short to be able to reflect market developments.

Currently, the afternoon session starts at 1pm and end at 2.15pm.

According to Phan Thi Tuong Tam, General Director of the Ho Chi Minh exchange, the bourse's liquidity increased substantially after the exchange extended trading hours into the afternoon in March 2012.

SSC Chairman Vu Bang said the commission agreed in principle to the trading hour extension scheme of the two exchanges. They are expected to start pilot programmes in July, from July 1-5 on the HCM Stock Exchange and from July 8 on its Hanoi counterpart.

While most securities companies confirm their systems can run on the new operating times, they are still concerned about the payment process for investors in the afternoon, collaboration between securities firms and banks as well as longer working hours.-VNA