Shares end a bloody week negative as foreign selling hits large-caps

Saturday, Mar 21, 2020 06:29

Customers at a Bao Viet Holdings insurance branch. Bao Viet Holdings (BVH) lost 6.5 per cent on Friday to close at VND34,700 (US$1.5) per share. — VNA/VNS Photo Tran Viet

Vietnamese shares dived again on foreign selling despite efforts by the State Bank and Government to stem the economic impacts of the coronavirus pandemic.

The benchmark VN-Index on the Ho Chi Minh Stock Exchange tumbled 2.23 per cent to close Friday at a three-year low of 709.73 points.

The VN-Index lost a total of 5.07 per cent in the last two days and 6.83 per cent this week.

Since January 30, the benchmark has declined by a total of 28.4 per cent.

The HNX-Index on the Ha Noi Stock Exchange gained 0.79 per cent to end at 101.79 points.

The northern market index fell 0.84 per cent on Thursday. It totalled a weekly gain of 0.4 per cent.

Nearly 286 million shares were traded on the two local exchanges, worth VND4.68 trillion (US$200 million).

Of the total, 274.5 million shares were traded via order-matching deals, worth VND3.53 trillion.

Market sentiment remained low despite stimulus packages to fight economic damage caused by COVID-19.

Central banks across America, Europe and Asia have announced packages worth trillions of dollar, helping Asia-Pacific stocks rebound strongly on Friday.

Viet Nam’s Ministry of Finance has cut 10-50 per cent of charges for nine securities services such as stock trading and deposits, position and margin management, auctions, and listed covered warrant management.

The ministry’s latest decision aims to ease difficulties for investors and boost market trading liquidity since the pandemic has caused severe losses for investors and wiped out billions of dollars from the market.

But the Vietnamese market declined as large-cap stocks were again hit by strong foreign sell-offs, Thanh Cong Securities Co (TCSC) said in its daily report.

Foreign investors net-sold a total of nearly VND978 billion worth of local shares on Friday, up 87 per cent from Thursday. Net foreign selling value this week reached nearly VND3.2 trillion, up 55 per cent from last week.

Since the Vietnamese market returned from the Lunar New Year holiday on January 30, foreign investors have offloaded a total net value of more than VND10 trillion.

Foreign selling hit the large-cap tracker VN30-Index, pulling it down 0.86 per cent and sending 13 of the 30 largest stocks by market capitalisation and trading liquidity into negative territory.

Shares of property developers Vingroup (VIC), Vinhomes (VHM) and Vincom Retail (VRE) were the worst-performing, tumbling 6.8-7.0 per cent.

Other declining large-caps included Viecombank (VCB), insurer Bao Viet (BVH), steel company Hoa Phat (HPG), Vietinbank (CTG), and Bank for Investment and Development of Vietnam (BID).

“Investors are very pessimistic right now and the prolonged foreign sell-offs make it harder for the market to bounce back,” TCSC said.

“The local market will likely keep struggling until there are positive signals in the fight against the global pandemic," the company said. — VNS

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