ECONOMY

Shares fall again; trading lacks clear direction

Equities fell again yesterday after spending the week battling thin trading volumes and a lack of clear direction. The benchmark general index ended 0.49 percent lower at 2,574.68 points. On the week, it lost 71.7 points, or 2.7 percent. «It’s evident there’s no appetite and you see this in the low volumes. It indicates there’s still no clear view of where we’re going in 2002,» said Aspis Securities head analyst Alexandros Antzoulides. Total turnover yesterday was the highest all week, at 125.04 million euros. Volume came to 22.2 million shares. «Real turnover is low and the market is looking for a catalytic event. When it waits for too long and no news appears, it moves lower,» Antzoulides said. The FTSE/ASE-20 index of blue chips slipped 0.65 percent lower to 1,397.43 points while the FTSE/ASE-40 index of mid-caps lost 0.58 percent. Small-caps dropped 0.33 percent. Closed-end fund Arrow fell sharply in its debut on the main market, losing 21.18 percent to 2.01 euros after going public at 2.55 euros, bucking the trend of other IPOs this week. Losers outnumbered winners 204 to 102 with 48 stocks unchanged on 354 traded.(Reuters)