Shares retreated on July 9 on both of the nation's stock exchanges. On the HCM Stock Exchange, the VN-Index closed down 1.76 percent to 408.12 points, while the value of trades slowed to just 444.5 billion VND (21 million USD). Volume was a mere 32 million shares.

None of the 30 leading shares tracked by the VN30 Index managed to post gains, and the VN30 declined by nearly 1.7 percent to end the session at 482.49 points. Property developers Dic Corp (DIG) and Quoc Cuong Gia Lai (QCG), financial companies Ocean Group (OGC) and PetroVietnam Finance (PVF), and Vinh Son-Song Hinh Hydropower Co (VSH) all bottomed out.

Ninh Van Bay Travel Real Estate Co (NVT) was the most-active share in HCM City with around 1.9 million shares changing hands before it plunged to its floor price of just 4,200 VND per share.

On the Hanoi Stock Exchange, the HNX-Index also tumbled by 1.47 percent to 68.20 points. The value of trades declined 11 percent from the previours level to 261.7 billion VND (12.4 million USD), while volume dropped to 27.6 million shares. Losers overwhelmed gainers by 191-53.

On its first day, the new HNX30 Index, which tracks the northern bourse's 30 best stocks, lost 3.6 percent of its value to close at 127.34 points.

VNDirect Securities Co (VND) was the most-active share nationwide with over 3.1 million exchanged.

The State Bank of Vietnam reported that credit growth as of June 30 had totalled just 0.76 percent since the end of last year. While export credit increased by 12.63 percent and loans to support industries also grew by 7.13 percent, credit for small- and medium-sized enterprises continued to decline by 13.7 percent, with many small businesses still facing difficulties accessing loans.

Hoang Van Dung, vice president of the Vietnam Chamber of Commerce and Industry, urged new measures to help small business. "We should establish credit guarantee funds to open up greater access to capital," Dung suggested.

He also advocated a reduction in administrative procedures and greater efforts to prevent corruption in order to minimise costs for enterprises, as well as more technology transfers to make production more profitable.-VNA