Blue chip sales bring index slightly lower

Shares closed slightly lower yesterday on minor profit taking in selected blue chips, dealers said. It was the fourth consecutive decline for the Athens Stock Exchange (ASE) general index. The index closed down 0.26 percent at 2,486.43 points. On a weekly basis, it lost 1.24 percent. The blue chip index fell 0.24 percent to 1,323.23 points, while the mid-cap index was 0.02 percent down. The small-cap index rose 1.12 percent, however, partly thanks to strong textile stocks which rose 3.44 percent, the best performance among sectoral indices. Banks finished 0.15 percent up with Emporiki leading risers, up 3.89 percent at 24.04 euros, as investors acted on expectations of good first-quarter results and information about a possible further investment by France’s Credit Agricole. The National Bank of Greece was up 0.33 percent to 24.58 euros, and Alpha rose 0.53 percent to 26.52 euros, while EFG Eurobank Ergasias declined 1.52 percent to 18.14 euros. Telecoms company OTE fell back 0.84 percent to 11.80 euros, energy monopoly PPC moved 0.19 percent higher to 20.64 euros, while lottery operator OPAP was 1.86 percent lower at 15.80. A total of 177 stocks finished up, 118 fell and 63 remained unchanged. Total trading volume reached 142 million euros.

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