OTE’s results and MSCI ‘rejig’ give further boost

Stocks ended almost 1 percent higher yesterday after better-than-expected results by index heavyweight OTE Telecom and foreign buying interest in banks, traders said. The general index gained 0.83 percent to 2,173.95 points, with the 20-share blue chip index closing 1.16 percent firmer at 1,101.86 points. OTE closed 3.59 percent higher, at 9.80 euros. The group posted a 18.9 percent fall in third-quarter net profit with nine-month net profit down 12 percent at 349.8 million euros. The banking sector as a whole continued to attract attention after an increase in the investibility weightings of Alpha Bank and Piraeus Bank on MSCI’s 20-share Greece benchmark, traders said. National Bank, the country’s biggest, gained 2.03 percent to 19.12 euros. Alpha closed down 0.09 percent to 22.20 euros. «With the MSCI rejig, foreign funds have been showing increased interest in Alpha. Today, it was National’s turn to benefit,» a trader said. Telecoms equipment maker Intracom was another big gainer, its shares rallied 6.25 percent to 5.44 euros on the back of a rumor the group was about to sell its 9.4 percent minority stake in Panafon to Panafon’s parent Vodafone. Turnover rose to 184.21 million euros, with 31.2 million shares changing hands. Advancers outnumbered decliners 198 to 104, with 58 ending unchanged. (Reuters)