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Stock markets show signs of life   2010-03-08 - VNS

The VN-Index last week moved back above the psychologically-important 500-mark as positive economic data helped shore up investor confidence.

Good economic news boosting the stock market during the week included the central bank moving to partially lift the cap on lending interest rates, as well as making a statement suggesting that commercial banks had emerged from their liquidity crisis. The head of the National Finance Administration Committee also voiced a positive outlook on inflation and the health of the banking system.

Kim Long Securities Co analysts, in their weekly report, predicted that positive economic news would continue to boost investor interest in the market.

The VN-Index added a cumulative 3.3 per cent last week to close on last Friday at 513.39, while volume on the HCM City Stock Exchange rose by nearly 60 per cent from the doldrums of the previous week, to an average of VND1.6 trillion (US$85 million) and over 39 million shares per day.

On the Ha Noi Stock Exchange, the HNX-Index ended the week at 170.16, an increase of 4.96 per cent over the previous Friday's close. Trading volumes on the northern exchange averaged 22.8 million shares per day, nearly doubling over the previous week's average, while daily turnover reached about VND931.25 billion ($49 million).

FPT Securities Co analysts revealed that investors were depositing more money in their accounts in anticipation of upcoming chances to catch the next wave on the market.

"If the money continues to be pumped in, we will be able to see continued advances in both indices and trading levels," said FPT Securities' Tran Quang Vinh.

Vinh also noted a significant number of newcomers to the market. "Normally, these newcomers need time to adapt to the market situation, but their participation will help excite existing traders with their own investments," he said.

Tracking favourable moves on global markets, Vinh forecasted another upturn this week, with the VN-Index ranging between 500 and 520 points.

Foreign investors demonstrated renewed confidence in the Ha Noi market last week, buying a net of about 640,000 shares, they continued to seek profits on the southern market, selling a net of about 4.7 million shares.

Kim Long Securities analysts suggested that this sector had begun focusing on portfolio restructuring, consolidating their investments in a few major shares.

MHB Securities Co analyst Pham Tam Anh said that stock markets this month could see greater impact from the shift in monetary and interest rate policies, which both reflected the health of financial market.

"Investor attitudes were showing optimism for market prospects and the supporting economy," Anh said, noting that his firm had forecast business growth among listed firms in the first quarter of 15 per cent.

"The VN-Index will possible choke up to 570 points this month," he added, suggesting seafood and construction materials as particularly hot sectors for investment.

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