Advancers outnumberd decliners by a four-to-one margin on the HCM City Stock Exchange on Feb. 17, pushing the VN-Index up by over 1.7 percent to a close of 403.30 points.

Total market volume increased 17 per cent over the previous day's level to 40.8 million shares, even as the value of trades dropped by 17 percent to 547.7 billion VND (26.1 million USD).

Blue chips surged, with many shares included in the VN30 Index hitting their ceiling prices, including insurer Bao Viet Holdings (BVH), PetroVietnam Finance (PVF), seafood processor Hung Vuong (HVG), financial conglomerate Ocean Group (OGC), Becamex Infrastructure Development (IJC) and Tan Tao Investment and Industrial Park (ITA).

Overall, the VN30 Index edged up 1.73 percent to 451.22 points, with ITA being the most-active share on a volume of over 3 million. Of shares tracked by the VN30, only those of real estate developer Vincom (VIC) and Phu Nhuan Jewelry (PNJ) closed down slightly.

On the Hanoi Stock Exchange, the HNX-Index gained 2 percent to close at 61.79 points. Advancers also overwhelmed decliners on the northern bourse by 205-55.

Both trading volume and value grew 14 per cent over the previous day, totalling nearly 37 million shares worth 303.3 billion VND (14.4 million USD). VNDirect Securities (VND) shares saw the heaviest trades, with 4.6 million units exchanged, soaring to their ceiling price of 7,800 VND per share.

Foreign investors continued to be net buyers in HCM City , picking up a net of about a million shares worth 50 billion VND (2.4 million USD). They became net sellers in Hanoi , unloading 7.3 billion VND (348,000 USD) worth of shares./.