Intensified selling in the afternoon trading dragged shares down on both national stock exchanges.

The VN-Index on the Hochiminh Stock Exchange fell for three days straight from a one-and-a-half month high on June 13, declining by 0.39 percent to 570.03 points on June 18.

The benchmark index fluctuated, following gains and losses of market leaders such as PetroVietnam Gas Corporation (GAS), Masan Group (MSN), Vinamilk (VNM) and Vingroup (VIC).

A majority of the large-cap stocks fell as sell-offs occurred in the VN30-Index, tracking the performance of the 30 largest stocks by capitalisation and liquidity, dropping 0.32 percent to reach 618.61 points.

Shares that declined on June 18 included Vietcombank (VCB), which declined 4,000 VND (0.19 USD) or 13.33 percent a share, and Masan Group (MSN), which fell to 1,500 VND (0.07 USD) or 1.55 percent lower.

Only six blue chips stocks managed to gain, while six maintained their share prices. Trading volume and value marginally declined in the previous trading session, with more than 99.9 million shares worth 1.3 trillion VND (61.9 million USD) changing hands.

In a sluggish trading session, which tied buyers hands, some stocks rose and attracted significant capital inflows, such as Sacombank (STB), Vietnam Electricity Construction Jsc (VNE), and stocks of the mining sector.

After rising for the two past trading sessions and playing the role of a major market support, stocks of the securities and property sectors declined on June 18 as investors booked profits.

Saigon Securities (SSI), HCM City Securities (HCM), BIDV Securities (BSI) and Agribank Securities (AGR) lost between 100 VND (0.0047 USD) and 500 (0.023 USD) a share each.

Property FLC Group (FLC) and Tan Tao Group (ITA) also posted losses, but continued to lead the bourse in trading volume.

Given investors' cautious psychology, coupled with rising selling pressure, the HNX-Index on the Hanoi Exchange fell 0.18 percent to 76.85 points and the HNXFF-Index, composed of stocks with a minimum free float rate of 5 percent, edged down 0.36 percent to 77.42 points.

The HNX30-Index, tracking the top stocks, ended 0.52 percent lower at 154.11 points.

With nearly 55.2 million shares changing hands, the trading value rose to 571.8 billion VND (27.2 million USD).

Foreign investors purchased a net volume of 4.5 million shares and a net value of 95.16 billion VND (4.7 million USD) on June 18, respectively, 370.7 percent and 574.4 percent higher than the previous trading session.

Sacombank (STB) was heavily traded by Market Vectors Viet Nam ETF during its porfolio's review.-VNA