Index ends stable after volatile session

Equities ended mixed yesterday as weak European bourses encouraged investors to cash in gains from last week’s strong finish, particularly in banks which lost more than 1 percent. «We saw some profit-taking, as expected after Friday’s jump, but pressure was later absorbed,» said Antonis Kouleimanis, analyst at Devletoglou Securities. The Athens general index followed Friday’s leap of more than 4 percent by easing 0.06 percent to 1,805.97 points. But it held above the key 1,800-point level and outperformed European markets, which were down after bomb blasts in Bali weighed on travel and airline shares. Blue chips on the FTSE/ASE-20 index retreated 0.23 percent to 901.52 points. Telecom stocks outperformed, gaining 0.47 percent. Mid-caps added 0.75 percent and small-caps dropped 0.07 percent. Turnover was 77.17 million euros on 32.1 million shares traded. Losers beat winners 161 to 143 while 57 shares were unchanged on 361 traded. (Reuters)