Blue chips lead descent but CCHBC bucks trend

The Athens Exchange (ATHEX) index declined for a second day, dropping 0.7 percent, to 4,359.43 points. The FTSE/ATHEX 20 index of the country’s largest companies lost 0.8 percent to 2,296.77. The Coca-Cola Hellenic Bottling Company added 3.2 percent, to -29. The world’s second-biggest bottler of Coke drinks was reiterated a «buy» by Deutsche Bank, ahead of the company’s fourth-quarter and annual earnings. The company will report on February 14. Forthnet gained 1.5 percent, to -9.64. Greece’s second-biggest Internet services provider was rated a «buy» in new coverage by Citigroup. The share price forecast is -13. Hellas Can gained 14 percent to -6.70, its biggest gain since June 2003. Crown Holdings Inc, the maker of about a fifth of the world’s beverage cans, offered about -44.8 million ($66 million) to acquire the rest of Hellas Can, in the second bid to gain control of its Greek unit. Crown’s Societe de Participations Carnaudmetalbox SA will offer -7.75 a share to acquire 5.78 million Hellas Can shares. Carnaudmetalbox already owns 76 percent of the Greek company. Piraeus Bank gained 0.5 percent, to -21.46. Greece’s fourth-biggest bank was rated «add» in new coverage at Dresdner Kleinwort. Turnover totaled -404.3 million. (Bloomberg)