Stocks drop on profit-taking

Weak performances on European markets prompted a profit-taking spree on the Athens bourse yesterday, as banks gave up more than 4 percent. The Athens bourse benchmark general index retreated 2.91 percent to 2,466.41 points, underperforming its European peers. Banks lost 4.40 percent. National Bank slumped 6.30 percent to 21.85 euros, despite reporting first-half profit figures late on Friday that beat expectations. Eurobank also lost ground, retreating 3.93 percent to 9.78 euros. Among the day’s gainers was Coca-Cola Hellenic, which advanced 0.63 percent to 16.10 euros. The blue chip FTSE/ATHEX 20 index fell 3.65 percent to 1,294.26 points. Turnover reached 329.8 million euros versus 268 million on the previous session.