ECONOMY

Exchange trims its early losses, down 0.74 percent

Late-session buying in small- and mid-caps helped the Athens bourse trim earlier losses yesterday, with the benchmark general index ending 0.74 percent lower at 2,582.26 points. «I can’t say that anything much has changed from the previous sessions. In the last half hour we saw some activity in the small- and mid-cap segment which boosted volumes, but I think this may have to do with buybacks,» said analyst Grigoris Karayiannopoulos at Bank of Cyprus Securities. Total turnover was 94.37 million euros, up from 83.97 million a day earlier, on volume of 17.6 million shares. The FTSE/ASE-20 index of blue chips fell 1.11 percent to 1,407.41 points with banks retreating 1.82 percent. The FTSE/ASE-40 index of mid-caps shed 0.70 percent and small-caps fell 0.37 percent. Brokers said eyes would be on the December headline inflation figure, to be released today. Inflation is seen rising to around 2.8-2.9 percent year-on-year from 2.4 percent in November due to unfavorable base effects and higher vegetable prices. Losers outnumbered gainers 217 to 94 with 36 stocks unchanged on 347 traded. (Reuters) This is just one month before the first imports of seed for the next cultivation period.