Shares finished higher on December 19 on both national stock exchanges as investors welcomed the US Federal Reserve's (Fed) move to "taper" monthly bond buying by 10 billion USD to 75 billion USD.

According to MB Securities, the Fed's tapering reflected a recovering US economy, which would have positive impact on Vietnam's economy, being a large trade partner. Fed tapering would also be good news for the Vietnam stock market, in the long term, forecast MB Securities.

On the Ho Chi Minh City Stock Exchange, the Vn-Index advanced 0.2 percent to 506.28 points, as liquidity improved with the total trading value reaching 1.392 trillion VND (66.28 million USD) on the exchange of 111 million shares.

Stock buyers also became more confident, although the domestic petrol price was increased on December 18.

Of the southern city's 30 top shares by capitalisation and liquidity, half managed to rise yesterday, in comparison to seven losers.

However, the overwhelming gainers, including Vinamilk (VNM), Hoa Phat Group (HPG), Ocean Group (OCG), Hoang Anh Gia Lai (HAG) and Vietcombank (VCB), failed to support the VN30-Index. The VN30-Index lost 0.13 percent to 565.52 points.

PetroVietnam Drilling (PVD) lost 1,500 VND (0.07 USD) to 60,500 VND (2.88 USD) per share and Vingroup (VIC) lost 1,000 VND (0.047 USD) to 70,000 VND (3.3 USD) per share.

Other losers included big names such as insurance company Bao Viet Group (BVH), PetroVietnam Fertilisers and Chemicals (DPM), Kinh Do (KDC), Masan Group (MSN) and Sacombank (STB).

Overall, in the southern bourse, 164 stocks added value, while 59 lost.

Tan Tao (ITA) led the southern bourse in terms of liquidity, with 9.6 million shares changing hands.

Meanwhile, on the Hanoi Exchange, the HNX-Index climbed for the fifth straight day, closing on December 19 1.01 percent higher to reach 67.62 points.

The HNXFF-Index, composed of stocks with a minimum free-float rate of 5 percent, also rose by 1.07 percent to 67.71 points.

Liquidity also improved in the northern bourse, with 71.11 million shares changing hands, with a total value of 573.29 billion VND (27.29 million USD).

Also, the HNX30-Index, tracking the capital city's 30 largest stocks, edged up 1.49 percent to 129.05 points.

Foreign investors concluded on December 19 as net sellers of 88.42 billion VND (4.21 million USD).-VNA