Illustrative image (Source: vietstock)
Hanoi (VNA) - Vietnamese shares fell again on July 21, led by Vinamilk – the largest milk producer, brokerage firms and insurance companies.

The benchmark VN Index on the HCM Stock Exchange inched down 0.1 percent to finish at 659.57 points. The southern market index has fallen 2.1 percent in the last three sessions.

The HNX Index on the Hanoi Stock Exchange dropped 1 percent to end at 84.63 points, extending a three-day loss of 2.8 percent.

Vietnam Dairy Products JSC (VNM) edged down 0.6 percent from a four-day rally of 8.2 percent.

The brokerage sector was the worst-hit business on the market as Saigon Securities Inc (SSI) and Vietinbank Securities Corp (CTS) announced lower net profits during the first six months compared to the previous year.

SSI lost 3 percent after the largest securities firm reported its net profit in the first six months dropped a quarter from last year’s figure. In the second quarter, SSI earned a net profit of 305.4 billion VND (13.67 million USD), down 15 percent year on year.

CTS slumped 4.4 percent after the company recorded a year-on-year 16-percent drop in its first-half net profit. The company also announced its net profit in the last quarter was nearly half of the number last year.

Other top securities firms such as HCM City Securities Corp (HCM), Bao Viet Securities Corp (BVS) and VNDirect Securities Corp (VND) also declined.

Auto and auto-part dealer Hoang Huy Investment Services JSC (HHS) slumped 3.4 percent after the company announced its net profit between April and June was 27.6 billion VND, half of the figure recorded in the first quarter.

Truong Thanh Furniture Corp (TTF) continued to plunge 6.9 percent after the company failed to provide reasons for shareholders at a meeting on July 20 on the suspension of a loan swap worth of 1.2 trillion VND between TTF and Tan Lien Phat, a subsidiary of property developer Vingroup.

On the opposite side, banks and property developers helped markets avoid further losses.

Among banks, Joint Stock Commercial Bank for Foreign Trade of Vietnam (VCB) and Saigon Thuong Tin Joint Stock Commercial Bank (STB) gained 0.9 percent each.

Additionally, Vingroup JSC (VIC), Nam Long Investment Corp (NLG) and Phat Dat Real Estate Development Corp (PDR) increased to lift the property sector.

Investors exchanged more than 151.6 million shares worth 2.87 trillion VND, slightly down from previous day’s trading value.-VNA