ECONOMY

General index follows European markets lower

Stocks declined yesterday on the Athens Stock Exchange (ASE), as the market followed European bourses lower. The ASE general index closed at 3,276.55 points, a drop of 20.66 points or 0.63 percent. The FTSE/ASE-20 index of blue chips declined 0.68 percent to close at 1,828.46 points, while mid- and small-caps declined 0.59 percent and 0.15 percent respectively. Among blue chips, betting company OPAP came under heavy selling pressure, finally shedding 2.15 percent to close at 26.32 euros. Other blue chips that registered significant losses were refiner Hellenic Petroleum (down 1.41 percent to 9.78 euros), National Bank (1.16 percent to 30.66 euros) and Duty Free Shops (1.13 percent 15.68 euros). OTE dropped 0.35 percent, closing at 17.12 euros. By contrast, there were gains by electronics retailer Germanos (up 1.47 percent to 13.82 euros), the Public Power Corporation (1.12 percent to 19.84 euros), construction group Hellenic Technodomiki (0.94 percent to 4.30 euros), mobile telecommunications firm CosmOTE (0.50 percent to 15.98 euros) and Alpha Bank (0.34 percent). Of 333 traded stocks, 102 gained, 153 declined and 78 ended unchanged. Turnover reached 160.59 million euros, including 15.32 million in prearranged trades.