ECONOMY

Piraeus lifts market to new 92-month high

A buoyant Piraeus Bank which spurred peer stocks, combined with an upbeat sentiment on other European markets, sent Greek shares just a breath away from 5,200 points, a 92-month high. Media outperformed among sectoral indices. The Athens Exchange (ATHEX) general index was 0.86 percent higher at 5,198.80 points, the blue chip FTSE/ATHEX 20 index advanced 1.35 percent and the FTSE/ATHEX 40 mid-cap index was up 0.61 percent. The FTSE/ATHEX 80 small-cap index gained 0.53 percent. The FTSE/ATHEX International added 1.23 percent. Piraeus Bank surged 5.79 percent to -26.66 after a Kathimerini report yesterday said the bank group will give an upbeat guidance for its earnings for the period 2007-2010 when it posts first-half results on October 31. Among other blue chips, EFG Eurobank climbed 3.79 percent, Hellenic Technodomiki advanced more than 3 percent for the fourth straight session, Bank of Cyprus rose 2.58 percent and OPAP added 2.18 percent. Viohalco, Hellenic Petroleum and Intralot also headed north. By contrast, Public Power Corporation slumped 2.04 percent, Titan dropped 1.59 percent and Cosmote was 1.28 percent lower. Turnover totaled -453.08 million, of which -116.96 million was in block trades, including 1.34 million shares of Cosmote purchased by parent company OTE for -32.74 million.