Citigroup raises Alpha Bank rating

Citigroup has upgraded its rating in Alpha Bank shares to ‘buy’ from ‘hold,’ and raised its price target on four other Greek banks, saying it expects robust second-quarter revenue driven by higher net interest income. Greece’s major banks are scheduled to start reporting second-quarter figures later this month, starting with Alpha Bank on August 25. Citigroup changed its rating on Cyprus’s Hellenic Bank to ‘buy’ from ‘hold’ and said it expects the bank’s net interest margin to improve as competition on deposits ease, Reuters reported. The brokerage said Bank of Cyprus, Marfin Popular Bank and Hellenic Bank were deposit-driven Cypriot banks that offered higher upside than Greek banks.