Stocks edge higher as Iraq war looms

Equities ended 0.33 percent higher yesterday, boosted by rising European bourses as the market’s upward momentum slowed after gains of more than 3 percent in the previous session. «There will be volatility as we are on the brink of a war. European markets will play a decisive role for the course of the Greek market,» said Petros Militsopoulos, analyst at Dynamic Securities. The Athens bourse’s benchmark general index ended at 1,543.29 points, its second straight positive finish. Blue chips firmed 0.05 percent to 745.38 points. «Investors are hoping for a quick solution to the Iraq crisis with only a limited impact on the economy generally,» said Militsopoulos. Banks slipped 0.66 percent. Mid-caps ended up 0.95 percent. Small-caps on the bourse’s FTSE/ASE-80 index gained 1.13 percent. Turnover eased to 59.19 million euros from 81 million euros previously, with 25.6 million shares changing hands. Winners beat losers 221 to 87, with 56 shares unchanged on 364 traded. (Reuters)

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