Foreign markets to determine trends

Investors on the Athens bourse will be looking to foreign markets for trends this week as the news flow is expected to remain thin due to the summer holiday period. On Friday, the Athens bourse’s benchmark general index added 1.18 percent to reach 2,322.77 points, on the back of solid gains in bank stocks. The broader market has gained 38 percent in the last six months. European shares fell however, ending four weeks of gains, pressured by weak US consumer confidence data, which raised questions about the pace of recovery in the world’s largest economy. Financials were among the biggest losers in the pan-European FTSEurofirst 300 index, which closed 0.8 percent lower. Across the Atlantic, brokers said US stocks could extend last week’s retreat after a four-week advance as the earnings season winds down and investors search for signs that consumer spending will help sustain an economic recovery.