OTE overhaul plans end blue-chips’ bad run

Led by OTE Telecom, shares on the Athens Stock Exchange (ASE) rebounded yesterday after four consecutive declining sessions but turnover continued to decline, signifying an underlying lack of interest. The general index advanced 1.26 percent to close at 2,273.9 points. OTE gained 3.19 percent, after comments by its CEO late on Monday that sweeping plans for overhauling the utility, including staff cuts, have matured and that what is needed is a little boldness on the part of the government which is the chief shareholder. Blue chips advanced 1.27 percent. OTE’s mobile subsidiary CosmOTE outperformed, ending 4.02 percent higher, National and Emporiki banks gained 1.79 percent and 1.93 percent respectively. Public Power Corporation was up 1.95 percent, OPAP 1.29 percent and Intracom 1.83 percent. Alpha Bank ended 0.21 percent lower. Mid- and small-caps registered gains of 0.40 percent and 0.53 percent respectively. Textiles rebounded with gains of 2.34 percent after reports of a bank plan to refinance overdebted Naoussa Spinning Mills sent the stock 11.35 percent higher. Advancers outnumbered decliners 168 to 100, with 78 remaining unchanged on 346 traded. Turnover slid to 75.03 million euros, of which 5.52 million was block trades.