March 19, 2014 / 5:31 AM / in 4 years

Vietnam index up 0.6 pct; debt delay boosts banks

HANOI, March 19 (Reuters) - Vietnam's VN Index rose
0.62 percent at Wednesday's break, lifted by gains in banking
stocks after the central bank gave lenders more time to
restructure loans and work on trimming down bad debt ratios.
    A new law governing classification of debts in banks would
be delayed six months until Jan. 1 next year, the State Bank of
Vietnam (SBV) said on Tuesday.
    The SBV, which had previously delayed the process by a year,
did not give a reason for the change of date, but analysts said
it would give debt-laden banks a better chance to clean up their
    "The delay gives banks six more months to restructure their
debts and allows enterprises to repay loans before the new
regulation comes into effect," said analyst Nguyen The Minh of
Viet Capital Securities.
    All banks gained, led by Hanoi-based BIDV, which
climbed 2.38 percent. VietinBank, Vietnam's largest
partly-private bank by assets, which rose 1.79 percent.
    Here is a snapshot of the VN Index at midday (0431
                 VN Index       603.58           
              PREV. CLOSE       599.85           
                 % CHANGE        0.62%           
                     HIGH        604.9           
                      LOW       600.42           
        Change (%) 1-mnth        4.402           
        Change (%) 3-mnth       18.723           
        Change (%) 1-year       25.196           
             52-week high       603.24  17-Mar-14
             52-week low        462.13  30-Aug-13
 (Reporting by Mai Nguyen; Editing by Martin Petty)

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