Individual investors to drive Vietnam stock market: experts

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Most of the cash flow into the stock market this year will come from individual investors, as long as they see some stability in the economy, experts said.

Economist Le Dat Chi, a senior professor at the Ho Chi Minh City Economics University, said when individual investors see bright economic future, they may choose stocks instead of other investment channels like gold, foreign currencies and real estate.

Otherwise, it may not be easy to convince them to invest in the stock market, he said.

While the economy expanded 6.78 percent in 2010, up from 5.32 percent in 2009, the benchmark stock index fell around 2 percent during the year.

Chi said the market stands a good chance of growing in the first few months. Besides, the US stock market

is likely to rally in the first half of the year, which can help lift the sentiments of local investors.

He said like previous years, local stocks may rise in March, April and December.

Nguyen Huu Tri, deputy general director of Viet Dragon Securities, said investors may want to invest in telecommunications and logistics stocks this year because these sectors would not be heavily influenced by economic instability.

On the other hand, the export sector will be affected by higher material prices and fluctuations in foreign currencies, he said.

Economist Pham Do Chi also believed stabilizing forex rates will be the key to growth. He predicted sluggish growth of the stock market in 2011 since Vietnam is struggling with its balance of payments and declining confidence among foreign investors.

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