VN Index continues falling on decreasing investor confidence hinh anh 1Investors at SSI’s exchange floor (Photo: VNA)

Hanoi (VNA) - Vietnamese shares were mixed on the two local exchanges on March 22, while the benchmark VN Index declined for a third session on lower investor confidence.

The benchmark VN Index on the HCM Stock Exchange dropped 0.2 percent to close at 570.91 points, extending a three-day decline of 1.4 percent.

On the opposite side, the HNX Index on the Hanoi Stock Exchange managed to rebound 0.1 percent from March 21’s fall to finish at 80.36 points.

Investor confidence declined on speculations that the US central bank will raise interest rates in April, and China has seen some short-term speculative funds leaving the market, Saigon-Hanoi Securities Corporation (SHS) wrote in its daily report.

An interest rate hike made by the US central bank could force Vietnam’s central bank to weaken the Vietnamese dong so the economy stays competitive in relation to other nations.

On the day, the State Bank of Vietnam raised its reference mid-point rate by 5 VND to 21,853 VND for a US dollar.

Lower investor confidence pulled large-cap stocks down, including dairy firm Vinamilk (VNM) and brokerage companies.

VNM dropped 1.5 percent at the end of the day while among brokerage firms, HCM City Securities Corporation (HCM) fell 0.9 percent, Saigon Securities Incorporation (SSI) declined by 1.8 percent, and BIDV Securities Company (BSI) slumped 3 percent.

Additionally, the banking sector weighed on the markets, led by the Bank for Investment and Development of Vietnam (BIDV) and Vietinbank, on expectations that they will not benefit from the revised Decree 18/2016/NĐ-CP issued on March 21 by the Government. It was issued to help banks reduce pressure on increasing their provisions for non-performing loans, Bao Viet Securities Corporation (BVSC) wrote in its daily report.

BVSC said that the revised decree aims to help banks that are being restructured and having trouble with financial conditions. But BIDV and Vietinbank are not among those banks.

At the end of the trading day, BIDV (BID) was down 1.7 percent and Vietinbank (CTG) dropped 1.2 percent.

The markets were boosted by automobile firms and some other large-cap stocks such as PetroVietnam Gas Corporation (GAS), property developer Vingroup JSC (VIC), insurer Bao Viet Holdings (BVH), and An Phat Plastic and Green Environment JSC (AAA).

GAS gained 1.1 percent, VIC rose 0.6 percent, BVH added 0.9 percent and AAA jumped 4.2 percent.

Both local markets traded nearly 186.4 million shares worth 2.67 trillion VND (118.8 million USD), a decrease of 17.6 percent from the trading value recorded on March 21.-VNA