ASE’s worst week in ’06 ends with another slide

Stocks once again lost ground yesterday on the Athens Stock Exchange, despite the fact that other European markets rallied, in a volatile session marked by investor preference for small-capitalization stocks. The ASE composite share price index closed at 3,878.80 points, a drop of 30.85 points or 0.79 percent. It was the lowest close since March 8. On a weekly basis, the index dropped 7.78 percent, limiting overall gains this year to 5.87 percent. The FTSE/Athex 20 index of blue chips declined 0.75 percent to close at 2,070.56 points. Mid-caps declined 0.14 percent and small-caps gained 2.05 percent. The FTSE/Athex International index dropped 0.34 percent, to 5,423.25 points. Among blue chips, the top gainers were ATEbank (2.40 percent to 4.26 euros), Piraeus Bank (1.86 percent to 23.02 euros) and betting company OPAP (1.62 percent to 27.60 euros). Top losers were mobile telecommunications service provider Cosmote (3.94 percent to 18.54 euros), telecommunications company OTE (3.41 percent to 17.58 euros) and EFG Eurobank (2.74 percent to 22.76 euros). Of 317 traded shares, 192 gained, 88 declined and 37 ended unchanged. Turnover reached 397.58 million euros, including 36.08 million in prearranged trades.