Index falls as investors pocket gains

Stocks slid back yesterday, as investors locked in gains in heavily weighted banks and sat back to await a flood of blue chip results for the next two weeks. Banks lost 1.54 percent, while the Athens benchmark general index slid 0.92 percent to 1,734.94 points. «The market corrected today… However, sentiment remains positive, a fact indicated by the Greek market’s resistance to falls on European bourses,» said analyst Andreas Karalis at Merit Securities. Turnover fell to 76.09 million euros from Friday’s 120.35 million euros, with 26.1 million shares changing hands. Telecom stocks fell 1.22 percent with OTE falling 1.81 percent to 9.78 euros after Greece’s telecom regulator said it will halt the company’s discounted rates. Blue chips lost 1.27 percent to 857.50 points, while mid-caps eased 0.15 percent. Small-caps lost 0.53 percent. Losers beat winners 208 to 101, with 52 shares ending unchanged on 361 traded. (Reuters)