ECONOMY

Little change as focus shifts to small-caps

Shares gained marginally on the Athens Stock Exchange (ASE) yesterday as investor interest declined. For the first time in several weeks, interest shifted to small-capitalization stocks, especially in the insurance, publishing and printing and construction sectors. The ASE general index closed at 2,385.56 points, a gain of 2.07 points or 0.09 percent. The FTSE/ASE-20 index of blue chips declined marginally (0.02 percent) to close at 1,295.55 points, while the FTSE/ASE Mid-40 gained 0.13 percent and the FTSE/ASE Small-Cap 80 gained 0.74 percent. Among the blue chips, construction group Hellenic Technodomiki made significant gains (3.05 percent) to close at 3.38 euros. Other blue chip gainers included metals group Viohalco (up 1.37 percent to 5.94 euros), Piraeus Bank (1.26 percent to 9.66 euros) and Coca-Cola HBC (0.76 percent to 17.86 euros). By contrast, National Bank declined 0.50 percent to close at 19.76 euros. Among sectoral indices, insurance gained 4.11 percent, followed by publishing and printing (1.67 percent) and holding companies (1.44 percent). On the other hand, real estate declined 6.92 percent, and five other indices dropped less than 1 percent. Of the 357 traded stocks, 185 gained, 107 declined and 65 ended unchanged. Turnover fell to 99.74 million euros.