ECONOMY

VAT cut news serves to boost local bourse

Stocks continued to grow on the local bourse on Wednesday, receiving a boost early in the afternoon from the prime minister’s announcement that the value-added tax on food service would be reduced in a move meant to increase consumption and help combat tax evasion.

The Athens Exchange (ATHEX) general index closed at 832.73 points, expanding by 1.72 percent from Tuesday’s 818.62 points. The large-cap FTSE/ATHEX 25 index grew by 1.74 percent to end at 284.04 points.

Banks suffered a decline and their index declined by 0.86 percent, with National Bank giving up 2.81 percent. Alpha started the day with an aggressive seller, but it managed to wipe out all its losses to end the session unchanged from Tuesday.

The day’s biggest gainers among blue chips were Marfin Investment Group (up 7.38 percent), OPAP gaming company (5.52 percent), OTE telecom (4.71 percent), and Jumbo (4.37 percent).

Titan cement suffered the worst losses, shedding 3.47 percent.

In total, 82 stocks registered gains, 36 recorded losses and 28 remained unchanged.

Turnover amounted to 45.4 million euros, down from Tuesday’s 47.8 million.