ECONOMY

Small-caps lead in fall

The Athens Stock Exchange (ASE) general index on Friday closed at 2,419.23 points – 2.79 lower than a week earlier, with a sellers’ market sinking lower after the bombings in Madrid on Thursday. Those events overshadowed the first post-election week of the new government and impending appointments of new heads of public corporations. Recovery on Friday was slight. Weekly turnover receded to 813.72 million euros, representing an average per session of 162.74 million, against 173.12 million euros in the previous week. All FTSE indices lost considerable ground, led by the Small-Cap 80, which fell a steep 5.35 percent. The Mid-Cap 40 was down 4.64 percent, while the blue chip FTSE/ASE 20 declined 2.61 percent. All sectoral indices ended lower. Basic metals, publishing & printing and textiles all shed more than 9 percent, while the insurance and construction indices declined 6.03 and 6.71 percent respectively. Heavyweight banks and telecoms were down 3.09 and 2.43 percent respectively. Among individual stocks, Alpha Trust Management was the worst hit (-29.5 percent), followed by construction companies Eucleidis (-16.7 percent) and Michaniki, whose ordinary and preferred stocks shed 16.3 and 15.91 percent respectively. Advancers were led by Kepenos Mills (22.91 percent). Decliners outnumbered advancers 308 to 48, with 16 remaining unchanged on 371 shares traded. The week’s most marketable securities were Alpha Bank, OTE telecoms and its mobile subsidiary CosmOTE. The new government’s policy statement in Parliament is expected on Thursday.