Stocks halt downward slide, rise marginally

Stocks gained slightly yesterday on the Athens Stock Exchange (ASE), following three negative sections in which the general index dropped 1.67 percent. The market was helped by a slight recovery in European markets. The ASE general index closed at 3,353.84 points, a gain of 4.67 points or 0.14 percent. Over the week, it lost 0.83 percent, limiting the year’s gains to 20.37 percent. The FTSE/ASE-20 index of blue chips gained 0.19 percent to close at 1,860.54 points. Mid-caps declined 0.04 percent and small-caps gained 0.37 percent. Blue chips with significant gains included Piraeus Bank (up 1.73 percent to 17.68 euros), jewelry maker and retailer Folli-Follie (1.57 percent to 24.62 euros), cement maker Titan (1.51 percent to 28.18 euros), casino and hotel operator Hyatt (1.34 percent to 10.56 euros) and Alpha Bank (1.18 percent to 23.92 euros). By contrast, Intracom dropped 2.15 percent, to 5.46 euros, and Germanos 1.20 percent to 13.16 euros. Of 330 traded stocks, 136 gained, 122 declined and 72 ended unchanged. Turnover reached 211.05 million euros, including 56.46 million in prearranged trades. The latter included mainly the sale by metals and engineering group Mytilineos Holdings of a 10 percent stake in subsidiary Metka to institutional investors at 9.20 euros a share.