Glitch prevents bourse from reopening this week


A technical problem is preventing the Athens Exchange from reopening after more than a month of being closed, as the country’s banks are not in a position to support its relaunch this week.

The computer systems of the Greek banks are not yet able to create new accounts for Greek investors who would participate with new money in stock trading once the bourse reopens, probably next week.

Furthermore, an extraordinary meeting of 25 stockbrokerage firms decided oday tn Wednesday to resort to the European Court of Justice arguing that the reopening of the Greek stock market with restrictions for Greek traders counters equality among investors. They also authorized the stockbrokers’ association (SMEHA) to ask for a meeting with the European Central Bank Vice-President Vitor Constancio to explain the views of Greek stockbrokers and their opposition to a bourse reopening with restrictions for Greeks.

The market’s regulating authorities said that the legislative act and the ministerial decision for restarting trading are ready. As soon as the process allowing the opening of new bank accounts for investors is completed, the bourse will be able to see trading resume for the first time since June 26.

While there are no restrictions on foreign investors, Greeks can only perform transactions with funds coming either from money from abroad, or from credit product sales, dividends etc, but not from cash in their bank accounts.

The regulating authorities (the Bank of Greece and the Capital Market Commission) are expected to keep the same opening hours of the bourse, from 10.30 a.m. to 5.15 p.m.