As many had been expecting, the Greek bourse benchmark dropped below the 600-point mark before the end of the year, succumbing on Thursday to pressure on bank stocks in particular. It was the seventh consecutive day of losses for Athinon Avenue, which picked up from where it had left off before Christmas.
The Athens Exchange (ATHEX) general index ended at 597.83 points, shedding 1.77 percent from last Friday’s 608.58 points. The large-cap FTSE-25 index contracted 1.64 percent to 1,569.83 points.
The banks index slumped 5.38 percent to a new 12-month low, after a Handelsblatt newspaper report warning that Greek banks would pose a systemic danger to the country and the entire eurozone if they don’t reduce their bad loans considerably in 2019.
Alpha Bank slumped 7.08 percent, National conceded 5.05 percent, Eurobank gave up 3.31 percent and Piraeus shrank 2.86 percent.
In total 31 stocks reported gains, 62 suffered losses and 26 closed unchanged.
Turnover amounted to just 24.5 million euros, down from Friday’s 57.7 million.
In Nicosia the Cyprus Stock Exchange general index declined 0.74 percent to close at 66.06 points.