ECONOMY

Gloom targets PPC and banks as oil prices rally

Blue chips, especially utilities and banks, dragged the Greek market lower yesterday, in line with developments on foreign bourses where sentiment was sent diving by the rally in oil prices. Utility and telecom heavyweights had given advance notice of a southbound trend on Monday. Yesterday, this spread to banks, whose sectoral index fell 1.86 percent. The Athens Exchange (ATHEX) general index closed at 5,199.11 points, with a loss of 1.57 percent. The blue chip FTSE/ATHEX 20 index slumped 1.73 percent, the FTSE/ATHEX 40 mid-cap index was 0.95 percent lower and the FTSE/ATHEX 80 small-cap index declined 1.11 percent. The FTSE/ATHEX International was 1.60 percent leaner. Public Power Corporation led blue chips lower, tumbling 2.97 percent. Titan fell 2.78 percent, Bank of Cyprus shed 2.65 percent after news it was accused of money laundering by US authorities, EFG Eurobank was 2.62 percent lower and National Bank declined 2.58 percent. Viohalco and Emporiki Bank were the only blue chips to hold their own, closing 0.85 percent and 0.10 percent higher respectively. Hellenic Technodomiki was unchanged. Turnover rose to -529.91 million, of which -77.08 million was in block trades. The total capitalization of the ATHEX fell to -199.32 billion.