Market loses steam after recent placements

Shares closed little changed yesterday, with traders saying recent placements had drained liquidity, while many investors remained sidelined ahead of the Public Power Corporation’s upcoming placement. The benchmark general share index added 0.10 percent to 2,114.75 points, with the blue-chip index almost flat at 0.02 percent higher. «It’s been a very quiet day generally,» said one trader. «The focus will remain on banks, and National in particular, as investors try to gauge the quality of the buyers of last week’s placement, if they are likely to be in the market for the long term.» National Bank will report its nine-month results on October 23, it said in a statement. Heavyweight Hellenic Telecommunications Organization (OTE) advanced 1.42 percent to 10.00 euros, with traders saying the rise was due to good reaction to the group’s recent decision not to pump fresh funds into Cosmorom, the indebted Romanian mobile subsidiary of its majority-controlled Romanian company Romtelecom. Turnover rose to 549.83 million euros, with 39.8 million shares changing hands as volume was boosted by the purchase of a 77.5 stake in cigarette-maker Papastratos by Philip Morris. Advancers trailed decliners by 100 to 187, with 64 unchanged against 351 traded. (Reuters)