Stocks ended sharply lower in the Athens Stock Exchange on Friday, hit by market disappointment after a fruitless political leaders’ meeting. The index dropped 1.71 pct to end at 1,264.92 points, after rising as much as 2.84 pct during the day. The index recorded a net loss of 2.5 pct in the week. Turnover was an improved 117.970 million euros. The Big Cap index fell 2.05 pct, the Mid Cap index ended 1.0 pct down and the Small Cap index fell 1.67 pct. Hellenic Petroleum (0.15 pct) was the only blue chip stock to end higher, while ATEbank (9.30 pct), MIG (7.14 pct), Cyprus Bank (5.19 pct) and Hellenic Postbank (4.51 pc) were major losers.
The Commerce (1.69 pct) and Oil (0.05 pct) sectors scored gains, while Insurance (3.44 pct), Technology (3.35 pct) and Health (3.73 pct) suffered the heaviest percentage losses of the day. Broadly, decliners led advancers by 92 to 43 with another 54 issues unchanged. Lambrakis Press (9.09 pct), Akritas (8.89 pct) and Maillis (8.33 pct) were top gainers, while Ideal (10 pct), Athens Electronic (10 pct) and ATEbank (9.3 pct) were top losers.
Sector indices ended as follows:
Oil & Gas: +0.05%
Personal & Household: -2.14%
Raw Materials: -2.08%
Travel & Leisure: -3.25%
Food & Beverages: -1.12%
Financial Services: -2.16%
The stocks with the highest turnover were National Bank, OPAP, EXAE and OTE.
Selected shares from the FTSE/ASE-20 index closed in euros as follows:
Alpha Bank: 3.20
Public Power Corp (PPC): 9.60
HBC Coca Cola: 16.86
Hellenic Petroleum: 6.68
National Bank of Greece: 4.51
EFG Eurobank Ergasias: 3.06
Bank of Piraeus: 1.00
ADEX closing report
The June contract on the FTSE 20 index was trading at -2.13 pct in the Athens Derivatives Exchange on Friday, with turnover rising to 55.298 million euros. Volume on the Big Cap index totaled 16,081 contracts worth 46.112 million euros, with 37,199 short positions in the market. Volume in futures contracts on equities totaled 24,280 contracts worth 9.185 million euros, with investment interest focusing on National Bank’s contracts (7,123), followed by Eurobank (3,147), OTE (1,944), PPC (467), OPAP (299), Piraeus Bank (4,257), Apha Bank (3,549), Cyprus Bank (409), Hellenic Postbank (669) and ATEbank (899).
Greek bond market closing report
The yield spread between the 10-year Greek and German benchmark bonds was stable at 13.52 pct in the domestic electronic secondary bond market on Friday, with the Greek bond yielding 16.49 pct and the German Bund 2.97 pct. Turnover in the market was a low 13 million euros, all sell orders. The 10-year benchmark bond was the most heavily traded security with a turnover of 6.0 million euros.
In interbank markets, interest rates were largely unchanged. The 12-month rate was 2.14 pct, the six-month rate 1.71 pct, the three-month rate 1.43 pct and the one-month rate 1.24 pct.
Foreign Exchange rates
U.S. dollar 1.447
Pound sterling 0.879
Danish kroner 7.568
Swedish kroner 9.044
Japanese yen 117.44
Swiss franc 1.240
Norwegian kroner 7.885
Canadian dollar 1.413
Australian dollar 1.354
**** Greece’s trade balance deficit dropped by 36.4 percent in March this year, resulting in a 33.4 percent decline for the first quarter of 2011, fuelled by rising exports and declining imports due to decreasing consumer demand, the independent Hellenic Statistical Authority (ELSTAT0 announced on Thursday in a report on the country’s commercial transactions.
The deficit of the Trade Balance, excluding oil products, for the 3-month period from January to March 2011 amounted to 4609.5 million euros (6263.2 million dollars) in comparison with 6917.5 million euros (9503.4 million dollars) for the corresponding period of the year 2010, recording a drop of 33.4%.
The total value of exports-dispatches, excluding oil products, for the 3-month period from January to March 2011 amounted to 3651.5 million euros (5011.1 million dollars) in comparison with 3244.6 million euros (4492.1 million dollars) for the corresponding period of 2010, recording an increase of 12.5%.
The total value of imports-arrivals, excluding oil products, for the 3-month period from January to March 2011 amounted to 8261.0 million euros (11274.3 million dollars) in comparison with 10162.1 million euros (1399.,5 million dollars) for the corresponding period of 2010, recording a drop of 18.7%.
The total value of imports-arrivals, excluding oil products, in March 2011 amounted to 3016.7 million euros (4210.9 million dollars) in comparison with 3999.5 million euros (5410.6 million dollars) in March 2010, recording a drop of 24.6%.
The deficit of the trade balance, excluding oil products, in March 2011 amounted to 1710.8 million euros (2377.2 million dollars) in comparison with 2687.8 million euros (3625.5 million dollars) in March 2010 recording a drop of 36.4%, according to provisional data.
**** Greece’s Producer’s Price Index in the industrial sector rose 8.2 pct in April this year, compared with the same month in 2010, after an increase of 9.8 pct recorded in April 2010, Hellenic Statistical Authority said on Friday. The statistics service, in a report, said this development could be translated into higher inflationary pressures if rising production cost was rolled over to consumption. The statistics service attributed the 8.2 pct increase in the producer’s price index to a 7.9 pct increase in the domestic market index and a 9.0 pct rise in the external market index. The PPI was up 1.0 pct in April from March, after an increase of 1.5 pct recorded in the same period last year.
**** Piraeus Bank Group on Friday said its pre-tax profits totaled 10 million euros in the first quarter of 2011, while net results distributed to shareholders totaled 2.0 million euros down from 7.0 million euros in the same period last year. The Group said its January-March period results were burdened by a recalculation of taxes.
Mihalis Sallas, the group’s chairman, commenting on the results said a recent share capital increase plan strengthened the group’s balance sheet and improved its capital adequacy rates. “In difficult conditions of the Greek market the road we follow is containing spending and improving revenues, along with a prudent management of risk and liquidity. The fact that pre-tax and provision profits grew 28 pct in the first quarter confirmed the rightness of our priorities,” Sallas said, adding that “efforts towards this direction will continue in the future, focusing also to supporting the Greek economy and its productive sectors”.
**** National Bank of Greek (NBG) on Thursday said its Group net profit totalled 157 million euros in the first quarter of 2011, compared with 21 million in the same period last year, despite the persistence of high provisions, which amounted to 381 million euros, up +21 percent from 2010.
**** Greece must surpass its fiscal targets and reduce the size of its public sector, George Provopoulos, Bank of Greece’s governor said on Friday. In an interview with Market News, the central banker said that if Greece managed to achieve commitments included in the memorandum, then the EU and the IMF will approve the release of the next tranche of a loan from a support mechanism.
Commenting on the government’s privatization programme, Provopoulos said it was ambitious and a large-scale privatization programme was very significant for the country, in its effort to exit the current crisis. He said that if such a programme was effectively implemented it could drastically cut public debt and release the country’s growth potential, convincing markets that Greece can make it. The implementation of a 50-bln-euro programme could reduce the debt by 22 pct of GDP and even more, as it could support growth and attract significant foreign investments. With this program we will sent a strong message to markets that Greece is changing, Provopoulos noted.
He underlined that Greece must surpass its fiscal targets, reduce the size of the public sector, boost competitiveness and combat tax evasion. He reiterated that talk over a debt restructuring was harming the country and stressed that Greece can repay its debt without any restructuring if it adheres to its consolidation programme.
Provopoulos said Greek banks enjoyed strong capital adequacy rates, stronger than the Eurozone’s average, but they were hit by a fiscal crisis.
**** The Greek government is speeding up procedures to implement an eagerly awaited privatisation programme. Finance Minister George Papaconstantinou on Thursday, in a letter sent to Deutsche Telekom’s management, launched procedures to sell an additional stake of Hellenic Telecommunications Organization to the German operator.
Under the existing agreement, the Greek government has the right to ask the German group to proceed with the purchase of an additional 10 pct stake in OTE. Deutsche Telekom currently owns a 30 pct equity stake in OTE, with the Greek government owning a 16 pct while another 4.0 pct is owned by Greek pension funds.