ECONOMY

Greek stocks slump with lenders as ECB restricts loans amid talk

Greek shares tumbled after their best three- day rally since 1991 as the European Central Bank restricted loans to its financial system.

The ASE Index lost 8.3 percent to 777.5 at 10:40 a.m. in Athens, with a gauge of lenders slumping 21 percent. The national benchmark gauge rallied 17 percent this week through Wednesday as the newly elected government held talks with European leaders to negotiate new terms on repaying Greece’s debt.

Since former Prime Minister Antonis Samaras announced presidential elections in December, intraday stock swings for the ASE have doubled from their one-year average, data compiled by Bloomberg show. Before this week’s rebound, Greek banks fell to a record, losing more than 8.6 billion euros ($9.8 billion) of market value in the three days ended Jan. 28. Since then, they rebounded 53 percent through Wednesday.

[Bloomberg]