ECONOMY

US inflation news turns last hour into a rout

Stocks declined significantly yesterday on the Athens Stock Exchange (ASE) in a session marked by high volatility and investor fears that rising US inflation would lead to higher rates. The ASE composite share price index closed at 4,020.85 points, a drop of 93.80 points or 2.28 percent. Before the mood turned sour in the last hour of the session, it had risen as high as 4,166.19 points. The FTSE/Athex 20 index of blue chips declined 1.95 percent to close at 2,144.56 points, while mid-caps and small-caps declined 2.21 percent and 3.86 percent, respectively. The FTSE/Athex International index dropped 2.24 percent, to 5,601.04 points. All blue chips lost ground, with 18 out of 20 falling more than 1 percent. EFG Eurobank (0.17 percent to 23.96 euros) resisted the most. By contrast, the top losers were ATEbank (6.64 percent to 4.50 euros), technology holding company Intracom (5.92 percent to 6.36 euros), metals group Viohalco (3.90 percent to 8.86 euros), refiners Motor Oil (3.80 percent to 22.26 euros) and Hellenic Petroleum (3.69 percent to 11.50 euros) and Duty Free Shops (3.17 percent to 14.04 euros) Turnover reached 475.04 million euros, including 127.98 million in prearranged trades.