ECONOMY

Small-caps steal show

The Athens Stock Exchange (ASE) general index closed last Friday at 2,319.30 points, a drop of 3.09 points, or 0.13 percent, from the previous week’s close. Despite the marginal change, there was a lot of movement last week as mid-caps and especially small-caps surged, though this surge was not strong enough to overcome a drop in blue chips. The tone was set by stocks belonging to financially troubled firms, such as the Klonatex group, as rumors spread that the companies would be able to refinance their heavy debts in favorable terms. Turnover rose to 537.28 million euros, an average of 107.46 million euros per session, from 72.88 million the previous week. The FTSE/ASE-20 index of blue chips dropped 1.40 percent to close at 1,231.31 points, while the FTSE/ASE Mid-40 gained 2.94 percent and the FTSE/ASE Small-Cap 80 rose 5.23 percent. The composite FTSE/ASE-140 index fell 0.38 percent to close at 2,678.57 points. Fifteen out of the 18 sectoral indices gained. The exceptions were non-metallic minerals and cement (2.87 percent), banks (2.13 percent) and holding companies (0.20 percent). The biggest gains were made by textiles (13.03 percent), publishing and printing (10.98 percent) and IT solutions/equipment (7.85 percent). The top individual gainers were the five Klonatex Group stocks: Naoussa Spinning Mills (64.04 percent), Klonatex’s preferred and common shares (60 percent and 57.41 percent respectively), Fanco (54.41 percent) and Lan-Net (53.77 percent). Top losers were Varveris – Moda Bagno (33.02 percent) and Cor-Fil’s preferred shares (21.84 percent).