ECONOMY

Relief reflected in the Athens stock market

Athens and the eurozone both stepped back from the brink during the European summit following days of heightening tension and investors in Greek stocks responded on Friday with relief to the news by sending banks 11 percent higher, adding nearly 3 percent to the benchmark and almost doubling trading volume. However, the benchmark posted a 3.34 percent decline on a weekly basis.

The Athens Exchange (ATHEX) general index closed at 744.42 points, adding 2.87 percent to Thursday’s 723.66 points. The large-cap FTSE/ATHEX 25 index expanded 3.60 percent to end at 222.01 points.

The promise of a 2-billion-euro package from the European Commission to tackle Greece’s humanitarian crisis and bolster growth was also welcome, although it is not clear how that is to be utilized.

National Bank was by far the best performing blue chip as it added 16.67 percent, followed by Alpha Bank (up 12.86 percent) and Grivalia Properties (8.11 percent). Marfin Investment Group gave up 10.81 percent, after issuing a three-year corporate bond amounting to 50 million euros.

In total 85 stocks reported gains, 36 registered losses and 13 remained unchanged.

Turnover amounted to 204.5 million euros, up from Thursday’s 116.1 million.