ECONOMY

Focus on few blue chips before last of H1 results

Greek stocks failed to hold on to initial gains yesterday, with institutional investors appearing anxious to book the profits incurred in July and August. The Athens Stock Exchange (ASE) benchmark index closed 0.30 percent lower, at 3,815.91 points, having risen 0.61 percent during the session. However, analysts were encouraged that the closing was not at the day’s lows and that 108 shares ended in positive territory. Indices of all capitalization headed south, with the blue chip FTSE/ASE 20 losing 0.16 percent, the FTSE/ASE Mid-40 shedding 0.50 percent and the FTSE/ASE Small-Cap 80 slipping 0.14 percent. Only a few blue chips seemed capable of holding their ground. National Bank and OTE accounted for about 75 million euros of the 285 million of total turnover, ending 0.71 percent and 1.24 percent higher respectively. Coca-Cola HBC added 1.59 percent. In contrast, Motor Oil slumped 2.77 percent, Public Power Corporation dropped 2.57 percent and Alpha Bank ended 1.44 percent leaner. National Bank is announcing first-half results today. Most sectoral indices ended lower, led by utilities, which declined 2.06 percent. Petroleum and gas lost 1.49 percent, banks shed 0.14 percent, while food and beverages added 1.06 percent.