BUSINESS

Bank stocks send index to higher ground

Banks played the leading role in another bourse session as their gains buoyed the benchmark and the blue chip index higher, while the mid-cap slide resulted in declining stocks outnumbering those that rose on Wednesday.

The Athens Exchange (ATHEX) general index closed at 1,136.76 points, adding 1.56 percent to Tuesday’s 1,119.30 points.

The large-cap FTSE/ATHEX 25 expanded by 2.01 percent to close at 366.20 points, but mid-cap index gave up 2.01 percent.

Bank chips accounted for 71 percent of the day’s trading as investors seek opportunities following last week’s decline.

The banks index jumped 4.23 percent, with Piraeus rising 8.11 percent and Alpha up 2.70 percent.

Jumbo increased by 3.70 percent and METKA rose on its favorable first-quarter financial results, climbing 3.33 percent. Corinth Pipeworks slid 3.68 percent and Piraeus Port Authority lost 3.06 percent.

In total 55 stocks registered gains, 61 sustained losses and 18 remained unchanged.

Turnover came to 195.5 million euros, down from Tuesday’s 262 million. Unless Fitch springs a ratings surprise on Friday, turnover is expected to continue its steady decline.

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