US Jan inflation data accelerate ASE losses

Greek stocks reversed their initial northbound course yesterday, and came under pressure in line with other European markets after the announcement of a higher-than-expected January inflation figure in the USA. The Athens Stock Exchange (ASE) general index ended 1.09 percent lower at 4,706.98 points. The blue chip FTSE/ASE 20 index was down 1.01 percent, the FTSE/ASE Mid-40 shed 0.63 percent and the FTSE/ASE Small-Cap 80 lost 1.33 percent. Public Power Corporation (PPC) headed blue chip decliners, tumbling 4.15 percent, and was closely followed by metals group Viohalco, which shed most of Tuesday’s impressive gains by slumping 3.98 percent. OTE telecom and its mobile subsidiary Cosmote continued losses, dropping 2.58 percent and 2.45 percent respectively. Hellenic Petroleum, Bank of Cyprus and Coca-Cola HBC were the only blue chips that edged higher. Only three of 17 sectoral indices saw gains: commerce, personal and household products, and financial services. By contrast, insurance sank 6.25 percent, utilities slumped 3.63 percent and telecoms dropped 2.53 percent. Turnover dropped to -417.44 million, of which -139.5 million was accounted for by National Bank, OTE and OPAP