Short-term prospects gloomy after selling run

A wave of liquidations sent Greek share prices tumbling to a two-week low yesterday. Although the market recovered slightly toward the end of the session, analysts said the overall picture did not vouch for the market’s short-term prospects. The Athens Stock Exchange (ASE) general index declined 1.45 percent to 4,054.80 points, after dipping as much as 2.06 percent lower during the session. Decliners outnumbered winners five to one and all sectoral indices headed south, led by insurance (-4.52 percent), raw materials (-3.12 percent) and financial services (-3.05 percent). Banks were 1.16 percent lower. Mid-caps and small-caps came under the strongest selling pressure. The blue-chip FTSE/ASE 20 index shed 1.30 percent, the FTSE/ASE Mid 40 lost 2.32 percent and the FTSE/ASE Small-Cap 80 fell 2.25 percent. Among blue chips, two banks managed to stay afloat, Piraeus (1.60 percent) and Alpha (0.33 percent). Hyatt added 0.18 percent. In contrast, ATEbank careered 4.93 percent lower as Morgan Stanley sold a block representing 1.8 percent of its share capital. Viohalco lost 3.26 percent, OTE Telecoms 2.97 percent, Eurobank 1.79 percent and Coca-Cola HBC 1.57 percent. Turnover totaled 487.1 million euros.