Over 160 of 680 listed stocks plunged to their floor prices on Dec. 15, continuing to drag down benchmark indices on both national stock exchanges.

On the HCMC Stock Exchange, the VN-Index lost another 0.84 percent from on Dec. 15’s close to conclude the session at 364.48 points, with decliners outnumbering advancers by over two-to-one.

Decreased purchasing power also pushed market volume down by 30 percent to about 40.5 million shares, while the value of today’s trades dropped by 19 percent from the previous session to 688.4 billion VND (32.8 millio USD).

Blue chips were mixed. While shares in property developer Vincom (VIC) hit the ceiling and steelmaker Hoa Phat Group (HPG) gained 1.6 percent, two heavyweight stocks – insurer Bao Viet Holdings (BVH) and food producer Masan Group (MSN) – fell by almost 5 percent. Other large-cap shares retreated more modestly or closed unchanged.

Sacombank (STB) was again the most-active share, with over 3.4 million changing hands; however, STB closed unchanged for a third session in a row at 14,800 VND(0.7USD) per share.

On the Ha Noi Stock Exchange on Dec. 15, the downward spiral continued, with the HNX-Index closing off 1.24 percent to 58.90 points. Losers overwhelmed gainers by 209-37.

Many investors started a strategy of bottom-fishing on the northern bourse yesterday as they increasingly expected another snap rebound following the current prolonged downturn. This helped increase the overall value of trades by over 10 percent to 311 billion VND (14.8 millioUSD), with nearly 38.7 million shares changing hands.

Kim Long Securities Co (KLS), the most-active share nationwide on a volume of 4.2 million shares, continued to decline, however, closing at VND9,200, a loss of 4.2 percent.

In contrast to local investors, foreign investors increased their buys, picking up a combined net of over 60 billion VND(2.9 million USD) worth of shares

Leaders of the State Securities Commission have confirmed this week that the settlement period for securities trades would be reduced early next year from the current three days after the transaction date (T+3) to T+2.

“Though this has been long awaited, its implementation takes time due to the current infrastructure inadequacy,” analysts of FPT Securities Co wrote in a market report. “Therefore, any positive impacts of this information are not significant enough to push up the market.”/.