Investors follow the fluctuation of stock prices (Photo: NVA)

Hanoi (VNA) - Vietnamese shares fell sharply on both local markets on April 19 as energy stocks suffered from recent falls in oil prices.

The benchmark VN Index on the HCM Stock Exchange slumped 2 percent to finish at 568.28 points, ending a two-day gain of 0.3 percent.

The HNX Index on the Hanoi Stock Exchange dropped 1 percent to end at 79.42, extending losses of 1.1 percent for a second day.

Recent declines in global crude prices pulled markets down, especially after some countries in the Organisation of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC), such as Saudi Arabia, and non-OPEC producers, such as Russia, failed to reach an output-freeze agreement on April 17.

However, crude prices showed signs of brief recovery as a strike in Kuwait temporarily cut the country's production and eased investors' concerns over a global glut.

US crude West Texas Intermediate (WTI) bounced 1.6 percent to trade at 40.62 USD a barrel from a four-day slump of 5.7 percent, while London-traded Brent crude rebounded 2 percent to trade at 43.77 USD a barrel after it fell 4 percent in the same period.

On the local markets, all large-cap energy stocks retreated from gains made last week.

PetroVietnam Gas Corp (GAS) lost 4.4 percent and PetroVietnam Technical Service Corp (PVS) was down 2.5 percent, while PetroVietnam Coating Corp (PVB), PetroVietnam Mud Drilling Corp (PVC) and PetroVietnam Drilling and Well Service Corp (PVD) slipped between 5.1 percent and 5.5 percent.

"Local markets faced the strongest profit-taking activity in blue chips since January, as investor confidence was low due to a lack of supporting news on the markets," Saigon-Hanoi Securities Corp (SHS) wrote in its daily report.

Blue chips also started to decline as they made gains last week, such as insurer Bao Viet Holdings (BVH), Vietcombank (VCB) and property developer Vingroup JSC (VIC).

BVH slid 2.9 percent after gaining 4 percent last week, VIC slumped 4.4 percent after it surged 9.5 percent, VCB inched down 0.2 percent from a rise of 2.7 percent.

Brokerage firms also made losses. HCM City Securities Corp (HCM) fell 5 percent, Saigon Securities Inc (SSI) was down 1.4 percent, and VNDirect Securities Corp (VND) decreased by 1.7 percent.

Both local markets traded nearly 199 million shares worth nearly 2.9 trillion VND (128.8 million USD), a decrease of 6.3 percent from last week's daily trading value.-VNA