ECONOMY

Shares decline 2.56 percent

The soaring interest rates for Greek bonds and continued uncertainty over the country’s use of the European Union support mechanism maintained the downbeat mood on the local bourse yesterday, as it began the week with fresh losses. The Athens Exchange (ATHEX) general index closed at 1,944.11 points yesterday, declining by 2.56 percent from last Friday’s close at 1,995.24 points. The blue chip FTSE/ATHEX 20 index contracted by 2.47 percent to end at 957.35 points. There were losses across the board for blue chips, with only Marfin Popular Bank remaining a non-mover. Marfin Investment Group lost 6.41 percent; ATEbank declined by 4 percent; EFG Eurobank dropped by 3.97 percent; National Bank fell by 3.38 percent and Piraeus Bank contracted by 3.23 percent. Turnover amounted to 141.7 million euros.