CCHBC leads market lower in thin trade

Greeks stocks, including the Coca-Cola Hellenic Bottling Company (CCHBC), the world’s second-largest bottler of Coke drinks, nudged south in thin trade on Monday. OTE telecom advanced after Marfin Investment Group, its second-biggest shareholder, dropped a request for a shareholder meeting to challenge management decisions. The benchmark Athens Exchange (ATHEX) index shed less than 0.1 percent, to 5,108.82 points even as 31 of its 60 constituent stocks gained, 17 declined and 12 ended unchanged. The FTSE/ATHEX 20 index of the country’s largest companies gained 0.1 percent to 2,726.89. CCHBC declined 2.3 percent, to -28.78. Piraeus Bank lost 1.9 percent and OTE advanced 1.2 percent. Gaming technology supplier Intralot rose 2 percent. The company signed a five-year, -50 million credit facility to refinance existing debt and fund acquisitions and investments. Cyprus’s Marfin Popular Bank advanced 0.09 percent after agreeing to buy a controlling stake in Russia’s Rosprombank. The bourse closed earlier at 3 p.m. local time for the Christmas holiday. Turnover totaled -160 million. Analysts did not rule out continued interest especially in telecoms, metallurgy, coastal shipping and commerce in view of rumored deals in the New Year. (Kathimerini, Bloomberg)