ECONOMY

Banks, telecoms push index to two-week high

Shares rebounded yesterday to settle with gains of more than 1 percent, with banks and telecoms taking the general share index closer to the 2,500-point resistance level. «The general index looks poised to breach the 2,500-point level in coming sessions, as investors bet on measures by the new government to boost economic growth,» said analyst Costas Vergos at Pentedekas Securities. The general share index ended 1.36 percent higher at 2,470.43 points, its highest level in two weeks. Bellwether National Bank added 2.55 percent to 22.52 euros. Traders said strong gains by Deutsche Bank on renewed takeover talk fueled buying interest for Greek banks. Alpha Bank rose 1.44 percent to 25.32 euros, while Commercial Bank advanced 3.27 percent to 20.84 euros. OTE Telecom was another blue chip gainer, rising 1.16 percent to 12.16 euros. «Investors are betting on a management change in OTE after general elections,» said a trader. The stock has outperformed the broader market since the start of the year. Blue chips gained 1.40 percent, mid-caps ended 1.04 percent firmer and small-caps rose 1.58 percent. Turnover rose to 176.53 million euros, with 26.25 million shares changing hands. Winners outnumbered losers 246 to 65. (Reuters)