Blue chips pressured, small-caps gain points

Subdued buying interest and low turnover continued to prevail at yesterday’s trading session at the Athens Stock Exchange (ASE), with most blue chips coming under strong pressure. The general index shed 0.94 percent, closing at 2,836.97 points, with the blue chip FTSE/ASE-20 index dropping 0.79 percent to 1,580.55 points. Mid-caps ended just 0.04 percent lower. In contrast, small-caps gained 0.66 percent. Among sectoral indices, refineries and non-metallic minerals were the heaviest losers, while IT equipment solutions and wholesale commerce realized the most gains. Heavyweight banks Alpha and National managed to stay afloat, rising 0.69 and 0.08 percent respectively. But other blue chips lost heavily, including Hellenic Petroleum (down 3.37 percent), Viohalco (3.50 percent), Titan Cement (3.16 percent), gaming firm OPAP (2.34 percent) and Intracom (2.03 percent). Decliners outnumbered advancers 161 to 99, while 71 share prices remained unchanged on 331 traded; 49 stocks were not traded at all. Total turnover rose slightly from Friday to 117.63 million euros, of which 62 million was accounted for by the four most marketable securities, OPAP, Alpha Bank PPC and National Bank.