Downgrade shaves 5.6 pct off stocks

Greece’s credit rating downgrade by Fitch sent the local stock market into a tailspin on Wednesday, with banks, as usual, being on the receiving end of the bulk of pressure as the threat of a credit default swap payout grows.

The Athens Exchange (ATHEX) general index ended the session at 751.96 points, dropping a significant 5.67 percent from Tuesday’s closing level of 797.13 points. The blue chip FTSE/ATHEX 20 index contracted by 7.25 percent to close at 306.16 points.

Banks shed 12.67 percent, with Hellenic Postbank slumping 18.36 percent, followed by Eurobank EFG (17.09 percent) and Alpha Bank (15.09 percent). Titan cement bucked the trend with gains of 1.36 percent.

In total, 40 stocks registered gains, 124 posted losses and 19 remained unchanged.

Turnover amounted to 77.1 million euros, compared with Tuesday’s 98 million.