ASE back at 1,700 points

The Athens Stock Exchange (ASE) general index on Friday recaptured the 1,700-point threshold it sunk below the previous week for the first time since early 1998, recording gains of 1.86 percent for the week in three trading sessions to close at 1,720,99 points. Total trading volume reached 387.23 million euros, an average of 77.45 million per session. Among the Financial Times indices, the FTSE/ASE-20 of blue chips advanced with gains of 2.61 percent and the FTSE/ASE Small-Cap 80 rose 1.56. The FTSE/ASE-40 of mid-caps was virtually unchanged, slipping by 0.04 percent, while the FTSE/ASE-140, a composite of the above three, ended the week up 2.05 percent to close at 1,952.61 points. Most sectoral indices finished with gains. The biggest advances were made by textile stocks, which rose 3.47 percent, closely followed by telecommunications (3.41 percent) and basic metals (3.05 percent). Refinery stocks also performed strongly, gaining 2.36 percent. The sectors that posted losses were real estate (0.93 percent) and insurance (0.54 percent). Of the 364 stocks traded, 222 registered gains, 122 lost ground and 20 stayed unchanged. The biggest weekly gains were realized by the fish-farming firms Selonta (28.3 percent) and Seafarm Ionian (26.32 percent), on rumors of merger plans. The losers were led by the preferred stocks of Viosol and Xylemboria, which declined 24.24 percent and 16.25 percent respectively. The most heavily traded stocks were OTE Telecom, which eclipsed the others with an average daily volume of 23.5 million euros, and gaming firm OPAP, with 4.2 million.

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