ECONOMY

Buying interest extends to mid-caps; OTE gains

Shares went up for the third session in a row as investors continued buying blue chips, while medium-capitalization stocks also showed signs of recovery. The increased trade volume, which exceeded 100 million after 14 sessions, was also seen as an encouraging sign. The Athens Stock Exchange (ASE) general index closed at 2,342.52 points, a gain of 14.32 points or 0.62 percent. The FTSE/ASE-20 index of blue chips rose 0.61 percent to close at 1,253.20 points. Mid-caps rose 0.46 percent but small-caps continued their decline, falling 0.29 percent. OTE’s gains – 2.28 percent to 10.78 euros – were decisive in the session’s ending on a positive note. Mobile telecommunications subsidiary CosmOTE closed at 13.52 euros, a 0.15 percent gain. Most bank stocks gained as well. For the second straight session, it was Emporiki that gained the most, this time rising 2.67 percent to close at 17.68 euros. National rose 0.44 percent to close at 18.22 euros and EFG Eurobank gained 0.33 percent to 18.06 euros. Alpha Bank, on the other hand, declined 0.70 percent, to 19.84 euros. Among the 348 stocks traded, 119 gained, 138 dropped and 91 ended unchanged. Turnover rose to 112.01 million euros, including 27.2 million in prearranged transactions, including the transfer of a 1.7 percent stake in metals group Viohalco.