Athens Stock Exchange: The largest slide since 1987

Greek stocks were in free fall in the Athens Stock Exchange on Tuesday, recording the largest slide seen on the Athens bourse since 1987. The plunge, accompanied by a deteriorating climate in the bond market, came in the wake of announcements that the presidential election was being pushed up to December, and the looming spectre of early general elections. The risk that Greece will be plunged into political uncertainty increases the country risk and led foreign investors to wholesale selling of Greek stocks, with bank shares particulary hard hit.

The composite index of the market nosedived to stop just shy of the 900-point level, shedding a record 132.24 points – or 12.78 pct – to end at 902.84 points, up from a low of 898.93 points mid-session when it was losing 13.15 pct. The index has posted accumulated losses of 22.34 pct since the start of 2014 and has lost 34.08 pct since the highest point of the year in March, when the bourse stood at 1,369.56 points. Turnover rose sharply to 212.73 million euros.

The Large Cap index posted epic losses of 12.93 pct and the Mid Cap index ended even lower, falling by 13.12 pct. All stocks lost ground, with the heaviest percentage losses suffered by MIG (-23.69 pct), PPC (-23.08 pct), NBG(-20.49 pct), Terna Energiaki (-17.88 pct), Piraeus Bank (-16.42 pct), Viohalco (-16.25 pct), Hellenic Petroleum (-15.98 pct) and Ellaktor (-15.77 pct).

All sectors lost ground, with the heaviest losses in Utilities (-20.63 pct), Banks (16.62 pct), Financial Services (-15.86 pct) and Health (-15.84 pct).

Decliners far outpaced advancers by 121 to 10, with another 9 issues unchanged. AXON Holdings (20 pct), Perseus (16.86 pct) and Yalco (10.06 pct) were top gainers, while G.E. Demetriou (-30.00 pct), Attica Bank (-27.47 pct) and MIG (23.69 pct) were top losers.