Index slightly up despite sliding banks

Stocks rose yesterday, led by heavyweight OTE, but underperforming banks slowed the advance after strong gains the previous day. The benchmark general index added 0.55 percent to 2,158.64 points while the banking index fell 1.04 percent to 3,731.20 points. «The market was relatively quiet today and appeared to be digesting yesterday’s gains,» said analyst George Laloussis at Solidus Securities. The general index breached 2,100 points on Wednesday. OTE Telecom rose 2.56 percent to 11.20 euros. «OTE’s rally could be due to this news but it’s also a result of psychology, with investors hoping the index could surge above 2,200 points,» said Laloussis. Blue chips fell 0.04 percent to 1,084.64 percent, while mid-caps rose 2.30 percent and small-caps 1.61 percent. Turnover eased to 233.89 million euros, with 48.5 million shares changing hands. Advancers led decliners 208 to 117, with 43 unchanged. (Reuters)