Vietnam’s benchmark VN Index started November with the year’s steepest decline, as investors dumped stocks despite the issuance of the Government’s second stimulus package.

The measure of 180 companies and four mutual funds on the Ho Chi Minh City Stock Exchange closed at 561.71 Monday after sliding 25.41 points, 4.33 percent, nearly the maximum five percent allowed by the exchange.

Trading also fell five percent in volume and ten percent in value compared to last Friday as around 64.75 million shares worth nearly VND2.9 trillion (US$155.5 million) changed hands.

On the index, eight companies advanced, 175 dropped and one was unchanged.

According to brokerages, the second stimulus package will affect the market in the longer term but may only help certain sectors, such as exports, agriculture and forestry production, and infrastructure.

Declines in the southern market were led by the seafood exporter NTACO Corp. (ATA) in the Mekong Delta An Giang Province, the HCM City-based real estate investor Van Phat Hung Joint Stock Co., and Tay Ninh Rubber Joint Stock Co. (TRC), a maker and processor of rubber products in Tay Ninh Province neighboring the city.

The list of active shares saw Saigon Commercial Bank, or Sacombank, (STB) take the top spot with more than 6.4 million shares traded on the HCM City’s bourse.

Vietnam Export Import Bank or Eximbank (EIB) came next with nearly six million shares changing hands, and Thanh Cong Textile Garment Joint Stock Co. (TCM) with more than 2.9 million shares.

The Hanoi-based HNX-Index tumbled 11.36 points, 5.70 percent, to 188.02. Nearly 32.4 million shares worth VND1.33 trillion changed hands.

The UPCoM-Index did not perform any better, ending up 70.24, down 2.48 points, 3.41 percent, over last Friday. A total of 188,030 shares were traded at VND3 billion.

On the global markets, Asian stocks fell for the fourth time in five days as weaker commodity prices and a drop in US consumer spending fueled concern a recovery in company earnings will falter, Bloomberg said.