Greek stocks ended lower in the Athens Stock Exchange on Friday as investors took profits after a seven-day rally in the market which pushed the composite index 6.77 pct up and the bank index 31 pct higher. The composite index fell 0.97 pct to end at 557.36 points. The index was up 3.77 pct in the week and stands 11.72 pct lower so far this year.
The Large Cap index eased 0.77 pct and the Mid Cap index fell 0.55 pct. Turnover was a thin 47.019 million euros in volume of 91,288,723. OPAP (1.88 pct), Motor Oil (0.63 pct) and Lamda Development (0.46 pct) scored the biggest percentage gains of the day, while Eurobank (6.98 pct), Ellaktor (4.96 pct) and Folli Follie (3.35 pct) suffered heavy losses. Among market sectors, Travel (1.48 pct) and Technology (1.05 pct) scored big gains, while Commerce (3.35 pct), Raw Materials (2.83 pct) and Banks (2.06 pct) suffered heavy losses.
National Bank and Piraeus Bank were the most heavily traded securities of the day. Broadly, decliners led advancers by 52 to 34 with another 18 issues unchanged. Sato (18.75 pct), Alpha Astika (12.36 pct) and Aluml (10.50 pct) were top gainers, while Kreka (16.67 pct), Dionic (16.67 pct) and Lavipharm (14.94 pct) were top losers.
ADEX closing report
The August contract on the FTSE/ASE Large Cap index was trading at a discount of 0.09 pct in the Athens Derivatives Exchange on Friday. Volume on the Big Cap index totaled 1,868 contracts with 5,343 open positions in the market. Volume in futures contracts on equities totaled 45,293 contracts with investment interest focusing on National Bank’s contracts (13,278), followed by Alpha Bank (5,572), Piraeus Bank (12,543), Eurobank (9,589), MIG (2,805), OTE (170), PPC (462), OPAP (411), Mytilineos (159), Motor Oil (73), Ellaktor (54), Hellenic Exchanges (31) and Piraeus Port (36).
Greek bond market closing report
The yield spread between the 10-year Greek and German benchmark bonds eased further to 7.64 pct in the domestic electronic secondary bond market on Friday, with the Greek bond yielding 7.77 pct and the German Bund yielding -0.06 pct. There was no turnover in the market.
In interbank markets, interest rates were mixed. The 12-month rate fell to -0.027 pct, the nine-month rate rose to -0.094 pct from -0.095 pct, the six-month rate was -0.160 pct, the three-month rate rose to -0.261 pct from -0.262 pct and the one-month rate was -0.364 pct.
**** Greek Finance ministry on Friday dismissed press reports alleging that the government would take unilateral action to cut targets for primary surpluses of 3.5 pct of GDP in 2019 and 2020.
Ministry officials told AMNA that there was no teleconference with the institutions over a medium-term framework and primary surpluses and noted that Alternate Finance Minister George Houliarakis was in London over the past few days for contacts with international investors.
*** Greek import price index in the industrial sector fell 6.7 pct in May this year, compared with the same month in 2015, after an 8.9 pct decline recorded in the 2015-2014 period, Hellenic Statistical Authority said on Thursday.
The statistics service, in a report, attributed this development in the so-called imported inflation to a 0.8 pct decline in the import price index from Eurozone countries and a 12 pct drop in the import price index from countries outside Eurozone.
The index was up 1.9 pct in May from April 2016.
**** Private building activity volume dropped 27.3 pct in April this year, compared with the same month in 2015, Hellenic Statistical Authority said on Tuesday.
The statistics service, in a report, said that building permits issued in April were down 5.2 pct compared with the same month last year.
In the January-April period, private building activity fell 11.7 pct in permits and by 15.9 pct in volume compared with the same period in 2015
**** The number of inbound visitors fell by 4.6 pct to 1,710 thousand in January-March 2016, from 1,793 thousand a year earlier, the Bank of Greece said on Thursday. The central bank, in a report, said that arrivals from the EU28 accounted for 54.1 pct of this total, and arrivals from outside the EU28 for 40.7 pct. In January-March 2016, arrivals from the EU28 declined by 9.3 pct year-on-year. This development is attributed to a drop in arrivals from non-euro area EU28 countries (down 15.7 pct to 558 thousand), as arrivals from the euro area rose by 2.5 pct to 368 thousand. Arrivals from non-EU28 countries fell, by 1.8 pct to 695 thousand.
In particular, arrivals from Germany increased by 5.5% to 118 thousand and those from France by 11.8% to 40 thousand. Arrivals from the United Kingdom also increased, by 6.3% to 107 thousand. Finally, turning to non-EU28 countries, arrivals from Russia rose by 134.9% to 20 thousand and those from the United States increased by 28.9% to 62 thousand.
In January-March 2016, overnight stays in Greece totalled 9,786 thousand, up 5.7 pct from 9,263 thousand in January-March 2015. This reflected an increase of 23.4 pct in stays by residents of non-EU28 countries, as stays by residents of the EU28 fell by 2.5 pct.
Since 2012, the Bank of Greece conducts a cruise-specific survey in order to enrich the data collected through its Border Survey. In line with standard practice, detailed cruise data were collected for January-March 2016 from 16 Greek ports, covering 82.7 pct of all cruise ship arrivals.
Ιn the period under review, 150 cruise ship arrivals (January-March 2015: 119) and 189 thousand cruise passenger visits (January-March 2015: 124 thousand) were recorded. This survey revealed that 96.0 pct of all cruise passengers were transit visitors, with an average of 2 stopovers at Greek ports of call, virtually unchanged from a year earlier. In January-March 2016, total receipts from cruise passengers rose by 38.8 pct year-on-year to 14.4 million euros.
The surplus of the balance of travel services was 76 million euros in January-March 2016, down 3.8 pct from a surplus of 80 million in January-March 2015. This development is attributed to a smaller increase in travel receipts. The rise in travel receipts in January-March 2016 was mainly driven by an increase of 28 euros or 9.6 pct in average expenditure per trip (January-March 2016: 315, January-March 2015: 288), as non-resident arrivals declined by 4.6 pct.
In January-March 2016, travel receipts totalled 539 million euros, rising by 4.5 pct year-on-year.
**** The current year will end with a recession of around 0.3 percent of GDP, while growth will return in the second half of 2017, Bank of Greece Governor Yiannis Stournaras said on Monday, speaking at the parliament’s Economic Affairs Committee during a debate on the bank’s annual report on monetary policy.
Stournaras said the estimated two-percent growth in the second half of 2017 will be enough to offset the negative effects of the two first quarters of recession. He also forecast that private consumption will rebound in 2017 and 2018, “despite the increase in taxation because employment will also rise”.
Greece could need fewer tax measures than those envisioned in the bailout programme agreements if an electronic payments system became more generalised, Bank of Greece governor Yannis Stournaras said at an event on Thursday. He pointed to the first encouraging signs in terms of indirect taxation revenues, as reflected in budget execution figures, following the rise in electronic payments due to capital controls.
If the government forced more businesses to install POS machines there could well be a sufficiently large increase in revenues so that it would not be necessary to implement the entire package of measures agreed in the last programme, he added.
The central banker, who was speaking at the launch of the book “European Banking Supervision: The first eighteen months”, also called for the recapitalisation of banks directly by the European Stability Mechanism (ESM), saying this would be more efficient than the method used in the Greek case.
**** The Greek rail operator TRAINOSE will be fully acquired by the Italian railway Ferrovie Dello Stato Italiane S.p.A for 45 million euros, the Hellenic Republic Asset Development Fund (HRADF) announced on Thursday. Ferrovie’s binding offer for a 100 pct stake in TRAINOSE was unsealed on Thursday and the Greek privatisation agency accepted the offer and named Ferrovie the preferred investor, in accordance with the recommendations of advisers on the sale.
This included an assessment concerning the validity of the offer, two independent valuations and a positive opinion from a Council of Experts.
The tender envelope will now be sent to the Court of Audit for a pre-contractual review and the share purchase agreement will be signed after the court gives its approval. Completion of the transaction is subject to the approvals of the competent authorities.
Ferrovie is the third largest railway company in Europe and is expected to transfer knowhow and experience to TRAINOSE.
HRADF noted that the conclusion of the tender marks the completion of a process that started three years ago and ensures both TRAINOSE’s viability and its further development. It also lays the foundations for successfully closing the dossier on illegal state aid opened by the European Commission with respect to TRAINOSE’s 750 million euro debt to the Greek Railways Organsiation (OSE).