Wall Street in Saigon

April 7, 2007

07:39′ 01/04/2007 (GMT+7)

Soạn: HA 1068273 gi đến 996 để nhn ảnh này
Investors sitting at a pavement teashop discussing changes in the stock market.

VietNamNet Bridge – The two words “stock market” have never been mentioned as much as today, at office talks, in restaurants, and during family meals. Along with the ‘movement’ of investing in stocks, the number of people flocking to securities trading companies on Nguyen Cong Tru road in District 1, HCM City, is increasing, turning the quiet streets into a “Wall Street” now.


The heat of the VN-index dance is not only burning investors but also the pavement of “Wall Street”. Securities have made impacts on the people who live on the pavement there, from retired men to tea sellers and vehicle keepers. The life of the residents on “Wall Street” is also very hot like the bourse. 

Taking advantage of each centimeter of land 

Investors flock to the “Wall Street” of Saigon very early, one hour before securities trading floors open, making the narrow Nguyen Cong Tru road even narrower. 

Toan, an investor, said: “The first thing is you must come early to have room for your motorbike. Vehicle keepers here are very picky.” 

Soạn: HA 1068271 gi đến 996 để nhn ảnh này

Mr Bui Van Dong, 50, a taxi motorbike driver on ‘Wall Street’, is reading a stock bulletin while waiting for passengers. He said: “I don’t have money to buy stocks but I try to read stock news to be able to talk with my customers. My customers are middle-aged women who love to talk about stocks. If I know stock information, they will always ask me to drive them and on the way they can talk with me about the stock market during the day.

All parking lots are overcrowded. Vehicle keepers frigidly wave their hands to drive customers out of their parking lots though the price for keeping a motorbike here is VND5,000, 150% more than normal. 

The fronts of commodious houses which once were shops have also become parking lots. Owners of houses in alleys are also trying to make their houses become parking lots. They even hire staff to go to the street inviting investors to leave their vehicles in their houses. 

“Land here has never been taken full advantage of like today. I want to lease my house but my wife insists on using it as a parking lot. Such a house can bring about VND500,000 to VND1 million (US$30-60) a day,” said Mr Tai, a retired man on “Wall Street”. 

After the first trading session of the day, investors overflow into cafes near trading floors to talk about securities.  

Ms Tu, the owner of a café near the Bao Viet Securities Trading Company, said: “I have sold coffee here for nearly 20 years but I have never seen such large numbers of customers. Previously my café only served staff of banks.” 

On the sidewalk near the SSI company, Ms Lan made the best of ‘free time’ to read information about the stock market. Hearing what she says to her customers like an investor, nobody would think that she is the owner of a pavement teashop. 

A man said recklessly: “You don’t invest in stocks so please don’t pretend to be a professional…” 

Ms Lan burst out, which made the man shy: “How do you know that I don’t buy securities? If you don’t believe I can tell you the price of each kind of stock and tell you which rise and which fall.” 

“I see many people earn a lot of money from securities so I have also poured out all of my savings for the past ten years to buy stocks. I hope to earn money for my old age. Stocks make fat profit!” Ms Lan said. 

Not only tea sellers on the pavement but also Ha, a fruit peddler, earn a lot from “Wall Street”.  

“I could only earn VND20,000 ($1.25) a day from my fruit handcart though I had to go everywhere. Now I earn hundreds of thousands of dong just around securities trading floors. I plan to save money for several months more to buy stocks,” Ha said. 

Moving with “Wall Street” 

Small talk over coffee on “Wall Street” every morning by residents is very boisterous, like the atmosphere inside trading floors.  

“If the stock fever continues this street will sooner or later change completely. A lot of services for investors will be offered,” Hung, a local resident, predicted. 

Not daring to invest all of his money into stocks, Mr Nam, a retired man, hasn’t ignored the opportunity to become rich on ‘gold street’.  

He said: “I plan to mortgage my house to have money to turn it into a café for investors.” 

In the afternoon, when investors who sell their shares in the morning carry bags of money home, conversations between women on “Wall Street” are more boisterous. 

Ms Huong, the owner of a small kiosk in a local market, complained: “I am impatient seeing people carry bags of money from the stock market while my husband is still emotionless. He is so sluggish! I’ll sleep separately tonight to let him know my anger.” 

Not only Huong but several women here use this way to ‘force’ their husbands to go to the bourse. 

Mr N, a victim of securities, lamented: “The spousal relations are also hot along with the burning of the stock market. I’m a state employee and my wife has a small shop at home. We have neither money nor understanding of the stock market. The house is our life asset but she wants to mortgage it to have money for stock trading. I can’t understand her….” 

The wife of Mr M, a taxi motorbike driver on ‘Wall Street’, said: “He has not given me a coin since early this year. I asked him and he said that he saves money to buy stocks. He told me that some people become billionaires in only one day. I want to be like them but I’m very worried.” 

Residents on ‘Wall Street’ are dancing the hourly movements of the VN-Index dance. Family, neighbour relations are also burning along with numbers on the electronic boards of the securities trading floor. 

(Source: Tuoi Tre)

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