ECONOMY

Growing hopes of resolving debt crisis ease investor jitters

Greek stocks headed north Friday, as did global equities, which rose for a fourth straight day on growing confidence that European leaders will find a way to resolve the eurozone?s debt crisis.

After a jittery start to the session, buyers showed selective interest in blue chips and sent the Athens Exchange (ATHEX) general index to close 1.95 percent higher, at 864.94 points.

The blue chip FTSE/ATHEX 20 index added 2.54 percent. Banks surged 4.99 percent, with Marfin Popular outperforming and ending 14.29 percent higher. Bank of Cyprus and National Bank, which were the focus of interest, gained 4.69 percent and 2.90 percent respectively, closing at 1.34 and 3.19 euros.

Turnover slid to 108.2 million, while 64 stocks moved up, 46 went down and 55 remained unchanged.