BUSINESS

Coca-Cola HBC pushes stocks higher

Greek stocks rose for a second day yesterday on the back of Coca-Cola HBC’s outperforming expectations and announcing first-half profits 36.5% lower than last year, instead of the expected 54% drop.

The banks' rebound ran out of steam and their sub-index ended 0.10% lower.

The ATHEX General Index advanced 1.47%, to 637.75 points. As a reminder of better days, this is just over 10% of the level achieved in that blissful summer of 1999, when thousands of first-time investors would shout their buy and sell orders to their brokers on their cellphones while on the beach.

Twenty-one years later, the beaches are less crowded and the investors have almost vanished. Market watchers still say that €37.2 million in turnover – up from Tuesday’s €33.3 million – is a low number, even for the holiday season, confirming their suspicions that any rebound will soon fizzle out.

As the Greek stock market is heavily tilted toward banks, analysts say that if the bank index does not rise further – some say about 7% – then investors are better off staying away. Buying on the cheap may not be worth it if stocks are not going to rise any higher.

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