ECONOMY

Telecoms move index up to just shy of 2,800 pts

Gains in telecoms pulled the Athens bourse up 1.22 percent yesterday as the sector tracked European counterparts higher, with index heavyweight OTE Telecom advancing to a new year-high. The buying interest in telecoms came mainly from foreign buyers who also happen to be the biggest participants in (local) telecoms, said Costas Theodoropoulos, fund manager at Allianz. The general index ended at 2,796.96 points after reaching an intraday high of 2,810.21 points. It was the fifth straight session the bourse had finished with gains. The 2,800-point mark is a psychological resistance level but the market’s tempo clearly comes from abroad, said another broker. Telecoms gained 1.53 percent and OTE ended at 20.58 euros, up 1.18 percent. Brokers said that investors remained focused on financials ahead of today’s press conference on the recent merger agreement between National Bank and Alpha Bank. Blue chips on the FTSE/ASE-20 index rose 0.9 percent to 1,545.28 points. Turnover was 257.63 million euros on volume of 53.5 million shares. (Reuters) Metz is another district where prices have reached dizzying heights, even in what has always been a more expensive area. Now, demands for 180 million drachmas for 100 square meters are not unheard of. Even in the neighboring but less trendy Pangrati, a new apartment costs 650,000 drachmas per square meter, or 850,000 drachmas for a penthouse.