Blue chips push index above 600-point mark in thin trade

Blue chips sent the Athens benchmark index above 600 points in thin trade Monday, after 10 consecutive sessions.

The Athens Exchange (ATHEX) general index ended at 608.62 points, with gains of 1.76 percent. The blue chip FTSE/ATHEX 20 index advanced 2.35 percent to close at 220.37 points. Alpha Bank, seen as the strongest suitor for a buyout of Emporiki Bank, surged 5.74 percent to close at 1.29 euros.

OTE telecoms gained 4.66 percent to 2.02 euros, gaming firm OPAP was 4.05 percent higher at 5.14 euros and Public Power Corporation (PPC) advanced 4.19 percent to 2.24 euros. By contrast, Postal Savings Bank dived 11.43 percent to 0.217 euros, while Coca-Cola Hellenic BC lost 0.21 percent to close at 14.01 euros.

Turnover shrank further to 15.6 million euros.