Rising selling pressure in the afternoon restrained the market uptrend on the Hochiminh Stock Exchange on January 20 as investors sat on the sidelines awaiting a clearer market outlook.

The benchmark VN-Index inched up 0.12 percent to close the session at 572.22 points but the market condition was negative with 103 stocks declining, 100 increasing and 105 ending flat.

Reduced cash flow in the market showed in drops in both market volume and value. Almost 80 million shares worth 1.5 trillion VND (70 million USD) were traded by the end of the session, down 10 percent compared with the January 19 level.

The rally of several large-cap stocks like PV Gas (GAS), Vietcombank (VCB), Vinamilk (VNM), Bao Viet Holdings (BVH), Phu My Fertiliser (DPM) and Hoa Phat Group (HPG) kept the market afloat by the day's end.

On the other end of the spectrum, Vietinbank (CTG), Eximbank (EIB), BIDV (BID), Sacombank (STB) and PetroVietnam Drilling and Wells Service Corp (PVD) all plunged, pulling the VN30, which tracks the top 30 shares by market value and liquidity, down 0.4 percent to 609.19 points.

FLC Group (FLC), a member of the VN30, remained the most active code with trading of nearly 5.8 million shares. FLC closed unchanged at 10,800 VND a share.

On the Hanoi Stock Exchange, the HNX-Index widened its loss to another 0.32 percent to finish yesterday at 84.99 points.

The HNX30, the tracker of the top 30 shares by market liquidity, also slipped 0.46 percent to stand at 165.60 points.

Liquidity kept waning here with market volume reaching the lowest level since mid-August at 40 million shares worth 545 billion VND (25.5 million USD).

FLC's investment arm, KLF Joint Venture Global Investment Co (KLF), was again the most active code with 9.5 million shares exchanged, decreasing 0.87 percent to settle at 11,400 VND a share.

Foreign investors turned to be net sellers in HCM City with a net sell value of 33.43 billion VND (1.6 million USD) but rebounded to be net buyers in Hanoi after heavy selling on January 19, picking up shares worth only 6.9 billion VND (322,400 USD) in the capital city.-VNA