Index clears 1,500-point threshold

The local stock market enjoyed a dynamic rally yesterday with bank stocks at the center of attention, leading the main index above the psychologically crucial level of 1,500 points, although turnover remained below 120 million euros. The Athens Exchange (ATHEX) general index closed at 1,540.69 points, growing 3.81 percent from Friday’s close at 1,484.13 points. The blue chip FTSE/ATHEX 20 index rose 4.27 percent to end at 740.92 points. It was the first time in eight months that the bourse completed five consecutive sessions with gains for its main index that have added up to 9.74 percent. Despite the market remaining reserved and awaiting corporate developments, the atmosphere has improved considerably, although the session closed three hours before Greece’s new downgrade by Moody’s. All blue chips registered gains, led by Ellaktor (up 7.14 percent), EFG Eurobank (6.35 percent), OTE telecom (6.17 percent), National Bank (5.67 percent), Viohalco (5.77 percent) and OPAP (5.39 percent). A total of 161 stocks rose, 28 dropped and 42 remained unchanged. Dionic led the gainers with a 20 percent rise, while Klonatex was the worst off, posting a 14.29 percent decline. Turnover came to 114.9 million euros.