The benchmark index had surged to 1,200 points immediately in the first half-hour of trading, but began sliding immediately after as investors offloaded large-cap stocks to lock in short-term profits.
Thus the index failed to surpass cross the historical peak of 1,204 points this session as many securities companies had predicted.
The Ho Chi Minh Stock Exchange (HoSE), on which the VN-Index is based, was predominantly red with 254 stocks losing and 193 gaining. Total trading volume rose 15 percent over the previous session to VND18.19 trillion ($791.07 million).
The VN30-Index for the stock market’s 30 largest caps shed 0.38 percent, with 19 stocks losing and 10 gaining.
Contrary to the previous session, real estate stocks were the market’s biggest drag. TCH of Hoang Huy Group topped losses with 3.4 percent, while VIC of Vingroup and VHM of real estate subsidiary Vinhomes, HoSE’s biggest and third biggest caps, tumbled 2.9 percent and 1.4 percent respectively.
In the same sector, KDH of Khang Dien House was down 1.5 percent, while NVL of Novaland added 0.3 percent.
Other major losers this session included POW of electricity generator PetroVietnam Power, down 2.7 percent, SSI of top brokerage SSI Securities Corporation, 1.8 percent, STB of private Sacombank, 1.5 percent, and VNM of dairy giant Vinamilk, with 1.5 percent.
State-owned banks continued to perform poorly this session. Of Vietnam’s three biggest lenders by assets, VCB of Vietcombank dropped 0.8 percent and BID of BIDV, 0.6 percent, while CTG of VietinBank added 0.4 percent. MBB of mid-sized Military Bank slipped 0.6 percent.
In the opposite direction, ROS of construction firm FLC Faros topped gains with 7 percent, its ceiling price.
Stocks of private banking blue chips reversed their downward trend this session, with four of them posting gains. EIB of Eximbank surged 6.4 percent, VPB of VPBank gained 2.3 percent, HDB of HDBank 0.4 percent and TCB of Techcombank 0.1 percent.
Other gainers included FPT of IT services giant FPT, up 1.1 percent, and SAB of brewer Sabeco, with 0.8 percent.
Meanwhile, the HNX-Index for the Hanoi Stock Exchange, home to mid-and small-caps, and UPCoM-Index for the Unlisted Companies Market continued their ascent, albeit slowing down and gaining only 0.23 percent and 0.05 percent, respectively.
Foreign investors continued to net sellers for the fifth straight session to the tune of nearly VND340 billion on all three bourses, with selling pressure mostly on HPG of steelmaker Hoa Phat Group, which shed 0.5 percent, and VND of brokerage VNDirect, down 2.4 percent.