ECONOMY

Banks, telecoms boost ASE to six-month high

Stocks gained yesterday on the Athens Stock Exchange (ASE), with investors focusing on small-capitalization listings, as well as certain banks and telecoms firms. The ASE compound share index closed at 4,154.44 points, a gain of 25.84 points or 0.63 percent. This is the bourse’s highest closing level since May 12. The FTSE/ASE 20 index of blue chips gained 0.67 percent to close at 2,284.51 points, while mid-caps and small-caps gained 0.70 percent and 1.70 percent respectively. The FTSE/Athex International gained 0.68 percent, closing at 5,964.44 points. Among blue chips, the biggest gainers were mobile telecommunications firm Cosmote (up 2.59 percent to 19.80 euros), telecoms company OTE (1.67 percent to 20.64 euros), Alpha Bank (1.32 percent to 23.10 euros) and National Bank (1.24 percent to 36 euros). Of 314 traded stocks, 173 gained, 83 declined and 58 ended unchanged. Turnover reached 325.83 million euros, including 73.97 million in prearranged trades. Among the latter, the biggest involved the transfer of 4.5 million shares of Proton Bank to New York-based Fortress Investment Group for 10 euros per share. The most heavily traded companies, by number of shares, were Proton (4,682,676), AEGEK (1,578,770) and Bank of Cyprus (1,416,965).