ECONOMY

Bank index hits a fresh 14-year low

The Greek bourse continued its decline on Wednesday amid considerable pressure on banks and a general feeling of pessimism regarding the future of Greek finances.

The Athens Exchange (ATHEX) general index ended at 1,400.06 points, dropping by 1.79 percent from Tuesday?s close at 1,425.57 points. The blue chip FTSE/ATHEX 20 index contracted by 2.21 percent to end at 629.33 points.

The banks sectoral index declined by 3.59 percent Wednesday to drop to lows unseen in the last 14 years.

Viohalco (up 1.25 percent) and Titan cement (1.24 percent) were the blue chips with the biggest gains. Heading south were Marfin Investment Group (down 5.56 percent), Piraeus Bank (5.50 percent), National Bank (5.25 percent), Eurobank EFG and ATEbank (both 4.35 percent). National?s drop below the price of the recent share capital increase (5.20 euros), closing at 5.05 euros, led observers to believe its decline will continue.

In total, 44 stocks moved up, 100 went down and 47 remained unchanged. Yalco Constantinou posted the biggest rise, with gains of 7.69 percent, while Hellenic Fish Farming led the losers, shedding 14.29 percent.

Turnover came to 78.3 million euros, up from a year-low of 41.8 million on Tuesday.