Foreign players trim positions in July

Foreign investors reduced their positions on the Athens bourse in July despite a 17 percent rise in stock prices for the month, according to figures presented yesterday. Hellenic Exchanges, the operator of the Athens bourse, said foreign portfolios held 48.5 percent of Greek stocks at the end of July, down from 49.4 percent the previous month. The figure stood at 48.1 percent a year earlier. Based on the data, foreign investors accounted for 44.3 percent of turnover in July compared with 46 percent in June and 50.1 percent in the same month a year earlier. Average daily trading volume in July rose slightly to 104 million euros. Compared with the same month a year ago, volume was down 43 percent as the bourse traded 182 million euros daily in July 2009. The Athens bourse’s benchmark general index advanced 17.2 percent for the month on bank-led gains, outperforming gains on Germany’s DAX and London’s FTSE, which each added 7.4 percent and 12.3 percent respectively during the same period. Greek investors upped their exposure to local stocks, holding 50.1 percent of equities in Athens, versus 49.3 percent in the previous month.