ECONOMY

Bank surge, driving index to month high

The Athens Exchange benchmark index gained 98.42, or 2.4 percent, to 4,162.31, its highest close in more than a month. The FTSE/ASE 20 Index of the country’s biggest companies climbed 3.2 percent to 2,181.66, led by banks, whose sectoral index jumped 4.7 percent. The industrial index was up 3.6 percent. The following stocks were among the most active winners in trading: Viohalco (7.1 percent), Bank of Cyprus (6 percent), National Bank (6 percent), Piraeus Bank (5 percent) and Eurobank (4.7 percent). Mytilineos Holdings climbed 7 percent, to 8.58 euros, the biggest increase since January 25. Hellenic Exchanges jumped 4.3 percent, to 16.58 euros, the highest rise in just more than a month. The operator of the Athens stock and derivatives markets announced that its post-trade unit and six of Europe’s largest settlement and clearing companies plan a joint venture to link their markets. OPAP lost 2.1 percent, to 21.92 euros, declining for a second day. Analyst Eftychia Yiagou at Eurobank EFG Securities cut the share-price estimate for Europe’s biggest publicly traded gaming company to 29.40 euros from 30.40 euros. Turnover surged to 804.3 million. (Bloomberg, Kathimerini)