Imported pressures pull ATHEX down 0.71 pct

Greek stocks dropped yesterday in line with foreign markets, led by banks Eurobank and National. The Athens Exchange (ATHEX) benchmark Index lost 37.64, or 0.7 percent, to 5,246.56, as 45 stocks fell, 11 climbed and four were unchanged. The FTSE/ATHEX 20 Index of the country’s largest companies declined 0.6 percent to 2,801.62. The Cypriot General Index gained 0.4 percent to 5,444.64. Eurobank dropped 70 cents, or 2.6 percent, to -26.30. National Bank dropped 28 cents, or 0.6 percent, to -47. Viohalco shed 2.03 percent to -10.60. By contrast, Hellenic Technodomiki, Cosmote, Bank of Cyprus and OPAP gained. The following stocks also rose or fell: Jumbo gained 0.8 percent to -25.50. HSBC Holdings raised its price estimate for the toy retailer to -29.5 from -26. «Upcoming inroads into Bulgaria herald the long-awaited Balkan expansion and improve Jumbo’s longer-term growth outlook,» it said in a note to investors. Neochimiki added 2.9 percent, to -22. The chemicals producer and distributor said third-quarter net income almost tripled to -17.8 million. Titan Cement fell 0.6 percent to -31.80. Marfin Analysis cut its price estimate for Greece’s biggest cement maker to -38 from -40.6, citing continuing weakness in the Florida market and a slowdown in Greek demand. (Bloomberg, Kathimerini)