ECONOMY

Heavy NBG share sales

Greek stocks, especially small-caps, came under strong pressure last week mainly as a result of a negative climate in other eurozone bourses and uncertainty in financial markets regarding the course of interest rates. The Athens Stock Exchange general index ended 2.55 percent lower on Friday than a week earlier, closing at 3,692.41 points. The blue chip FTSE/Athex 20 index shed 2.27 percent, largely the result of investors’ aggressive sales of National Bank stock, the company with largest capitalization in the bourse. The pressure climaxed about 90 minutes before the end of trading on Thursday, when details of the terms of the bank’s mammoth, 3 billion euro share capital increase became known, with a high discount between the current market price and the price at which the increase will take place. The FTSE/Athex Mid 40 lost 3.13 percent and the FTSE/Athex Small Cap 80 slid 5.53 percent. Turnover declined to 1.63 billion euros, an average of 325.98 million per session, from 441.21 million the previous week. All but two of the 17 sectoral indices fell last week: the exceptions were telecommunications (rising 1.23 percent) and construction (0.22 percent). The top losers were technology (falling 5.62 percent), raw materials (5.29 percent) and media (5.22 percent). Among individual stocks, the top gainers were the preferred shares of Tria Alfa (up 68.15 percent) and the common stock of Delta Ice Cream (23.23 percent). The top losers were Imako (down 20.51 percent) and Parnassos (20.47 percent). The most heavily traded stock was National Bank of Greece, with an average turnover of 39.53 million euros.