ECONOMY

Index below 5,000 pts, losses across the board

Greek stocks slumped for a second day, led by EFG Eurobank after Deutsche Bank advised investors to reduce their holdings in the country’s second-largest bank. The Athens Exchange benchmark index decreased 110.12, or 2.2 percent, to 4,962.53 points as 49 of its constituent shares fell, six gained and five were unchanged. The FTSE/ATHEX 20 index of the country’s largest companies lost 2.2 percent to 2,627.11. The mid- and small-cap indices dropped 2.9 percent and 2.1 percent respectively. Eurobank dropped 4.2 percent, to -21.40, its lowest in more than one year. The bank was cut to «hold» from «buy» by Gaelle Cibelly, an analyst at Deutsche Bank, on liquidity concerns. «We see potential for negative earnings revisions for EFG in 2008 as we estimate the group needs to raise about -7 billion to finance its loan growth,» Cibelly wrote in a note. She also cited higher risk in Southeast European countries like Bulgaria and Romania. Metals group Mytilineos crashed 9.43 percent lower, while Marfin Investment Group (MIG) fell 5.8 percent after news that it bought control of two unprofitable electronic retail chains. Intralot stayed southbound, dropping 4.6 percent. Titan Cement and Hellenic Petroleum both nudged higher than 1 percent, while Public Power added just 0.06 percent. (Kathimerini, Bloomberg)