Index at year-low on tumbling National

Equities fell for a third straight session yesterday as National Bank tumbled 4.7 percent on a combination of profit concerns and international sector weakness. Banks, which have lost more than 10 percent this month, dropped 2.30 percent. National ended at 13.38 euros. «The anticipation of weak nine-month earnings along with sliding banks in Europe is weighing on the sector. The drop in National is excessive,» said Dimitris Scapinakis, chief analyst at Marfin Bank. The Athens benchmark general index eased 0.57 percent to 1,727.09 points, a new year-low. Blue chips on the bourse’s FTSE/ASE index slipped 0.93 percent to 856.95 points. Mid-caps lost 1.49 percent and small-caps fell 1.53 percent. Among the shares that bucked the trend was Public Power Utility (PPC), which gained 0.90 percent to 13.44 euros. Turnover was 76.14 million euros on 22.5 million shares traded. Losers beat winners 238 to 70 while 47 shares were unchanged. (Reuters)