A trader sits in front of an electronic board at a Vietcombank Securities Co’s trading floor. (Photo: VNA)
 
Hanoi (VNA) – The benchmark VN-Index continued to rise on February 23 but at a slower pace as investors worried about a possible correction.

On the HCM Stock Exchange, the VN-Index inched up 0.1 percent to close at 717.24 points, lifting the three-day rally to 1.3 percent.

On the Hanoi Stock Exchange, the HNX-Index edged down 0.3 percent to end at 86.6 points. The northern market index has gained over four per cent in the past month.

“Liquidity maintaining high levels for many sessions made many investors worry that the market has reached its peak,” stock analysts at Vietnam Securities Co (IVS) wrote in a market report.

Trading volume touched a one-month high at nearly 293 million shares, worth a combined 4.4 trillion VND (193 million USD) in the two markets.

Overall market conditions were negative with 251 stocks decreasing, 204 rising and 242 unchanged.

Blue chips were on the defensive as 17 of the top 30 shares by market value and liquidity on the main bourse in HCM City lost value while 11 advanced.

Hoang Anh Gia Lai Co (HAG) and Hoang Anh Gia Lai Agricultural Investment JSC (HNG) tumbled after a strong rising streak.

HAG decreased 1 percent, halting an eight session positive run while HNG fell 1.5 percent.

On the bright side, oil and gas and real estate stocks supported the market.

Benefiting from global oil price recovery, PV Gas (GAS), the biggest listed energy stock, grew 3.9 percent and PetroVietnam Drilling and Wells Service (PVD) added 1.3 percent. Other smaller stocks such as Petroleum Equipment Assembly & Metal Structure (PXS), PetroVietnam Drilling Mud (PVC) and PetroVietnam Technical Services (PVS) advanced between 1 percent and 3.5 percent.

Brent futures rose to 56.24 USD a barrel, while US West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude edged up 0.6 percent to 53.71 USD a barrel.

Property stocks continued their growth but slower. The exception was Hoang Quan Consulting Trading Service Real Estate (HQC), which hit the daily limit of 7 per cent for a second day, while others such as Novaland Investment Group (NVL) inched up 0.3 percent, FLC Group (FLC) and Ninh Van Bay Real Estate (NVT) both up over 2 percent

However, according to IVS analysts, cheap property stocks still attracted good investments but faced correction pressure after previous big gains.

Foreign investors were net sellers in HCM City’s market after two net selling sessions, offloading a net value of 21 billion VND. They were net buyers on Hanoi’s bourse for a modest value of 3 billion VND.-VNA