Effect of ex-dates offset by imported optimism

A positive mood in other European markets seems to have ultimately got the better of pressures on Greek stocks yesterday, as blue chips, such as heavyweight National Bank and Motor Oil, started trading ex-dividend. The Athens Exchange (ATHEX) general index nudged to a new seven-year high, adding just 0.02 percent to close at 4,973.21 points, after hovering over negative territory for most of the session. Small-caps continued displaying vigor. The FTSE/ATHEX 20 blue chip index was down 0.27 percent, the FTSE/ATHEX Mid-40 gained 0.43 percent, and the FTSE/ATHEX 80 small-cap index ended 1.39 percent higher. Metals group Viohalco, hit by China’s decision to triple stock market transaction taxes earlier this week, rebounded with a vengeance, surging above other blue chips to add 6.04 percent. Public Power Corporation advanced 1.88 percent, OPAP added 1.69 percent, Eurobank gained 1.29 percent and OTE was 0.84 percent higher. Hellenic Technodomiki and banks Alpha, MPB and Emporiki also headed north. By contrast, Motor Oil and National Bank tumbled 4.89 percent and 2.39 percent respectively. Titan was 1.55 percent leaner, Piraeus bank shed 1.27 percent and ATEbank lost 1.00 percent. Turnover totaled -442.57 million, including -79.87 million in block trades.

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