Illustrative photo (Source: nhipcaudautu.vn)

Hanoi (VNS/VNA) - VNDirect Securities Corporation (VNDS) expects its post-tax profit to grow 31 percent year on year in 2019 to 487 billion VND (20.9 million USD), attendees heard at the firm’s annual shareholder meeting on April 18.

According to Pham Minh Huong, chairwoman of VNDS board of directors and general director, total revenue is forecast to grow one-tenth to nearly 1.8 trillion VND.

In the first quarter of the year, VNDS estimated its post-tax profit was 102 billion VND, equal to 21 percent of the full-year figure.

In 2019, Vietnam’s economic growth will slow down after having gained strongly in the previous two years, Huong told the meeting.

Total gross domestic product (GDP) growth is estimated at 6.6 percent, which is in line with the market expectations and lower than the Government’s target of 6.8 percent.

The Vietnamese Dong will depreciate by 2 percent this year, dragged by internal factors, while export turnover growth is forecast to decline, she added.

But the 2 percent depreciation is considered soft, Huong said, as “pressures from international markets will ease because of a more dovish Fed approach (for interest rate hikes).”

Major challenges for the Vietnamese economy in 2019 include the runaway of foreign capital from emerging markets and risky assets on worries about geo-political disruptions and trade tensions, she added.

Meanwhile, cautious management of fiscal policy and stagnant equitisation of State-owned enterprises may worry investors about the economic growth and structure in the long run, Huong said.

Cautious earnings targets were set after the company recorded lower post-tax profit in 2018 due to the market slump since April 9, 2018.

In 2018, VNDS recorded 1.63 trillion VND in total revenue, up 30 percent year on year, and 373 billion VND in post-tax profit, down 22 percent year on year.

At the meeting, the company also planned to pay 104.3 billion VND worth of dividend payout. It also wanted to issue 55.11 million shares, worth 551.1 billion VND, to current shareholders to increase its capital.

VNDS also planned to sell 66 million shares in a private deal to seek potential shareholders that can provide financial and technical support for the company and increase its capital.

The company is listing 220.4 million shares on the Ho Chi Minh Stock Exchange under code VND. The company shares ended flat on April 18.-VNS/VNA