ECONOMY

Index briefly breaches the 2,500-point level

Shares breached the 2,500 resistance level yesterday, buoyed by blue chip gains in the last trading session before general elections tomorrow, but trimmed gains after an unexpectedly weak US jobs report. «The market was influenced by the US jobs report, tracking the reaction on European bourses,» said trader Dimitris Sideris at P&K Securities. The benchmark general share index eased from an intrasession high of 2,529.59 points to close at 2,489.38 points, up 0.77 percent. The gain over the week was 1.5 percent. General Bank, whose shareholders on Thursday elected Jacques Tournebize as its new chief executive and approved the extension of a share buyback scheme for up to 7 percent of its share capital, gained 3.19 percent to 7.76 euros. Buying interest also buoyed Alpha Bank shares 2.45 percent to 25.94 euros, its highest close since January 19. EFG Eurobank traded 1.18 percent higher at 17.22 euros. Blue chips advanced 0.99 percent, mid-caps were virtually flat while small-caps gained 0.69 percent. Turnover rose to 243.09 million euros with 44.15 million shares changing hands. Advancers led decliners 219 to 82. (Reuters)