Greek Stocks Drop the Most Since 2008
Greek stocks tumbled the most since 2008 amid doubts that the country will abide by the commitments needed to obtain further financial aid.
The ASE Index (ASE) sank 7.1 percent to 586.04 at the close in Athens, its largest drop since October 2008. The gauge earlier retreated as much as 7.6 percent. All but four of the 60 stocks in the equity benchmark declined. The FTSE/Athex Banks Index slumped 9.8 percent.
“There are two issues right now: the first is the news during the weekend and the fact that we’re still in the uncertainty area,” said Theodore Krintas, managing director of Attica Wealth Management in Athens, in a phone interview. “That was multiplied by the fact that today’s markets were quite uneasy with respect to Spain.”
The International Monetary Fund will stop paying further rescue aid to Greece, making the country’s insolvency in September more likely, Der Spiegel magazine reported, citing unidentified European Union officials.
The troika of Greece’s international creditors -- the European Commission, the European Central Bank and the IMF -- will arrive in Athens tomorrow to assess the government’s progress in abiding by the terms of its two bailouts.
“What’s emerging is that Greece will probably not be able to fulfill its conditions,” Germany’s Vice Chancellor, Philipp Roesler said yesterday in an interview with the broadcaster ARD. “What is clear: if Greece doesn’t fulfill those conditions, then there can be no more payments.”
Greece’s Prime Minister, Antonis Samaras, and his coalition partners plan 11.5 billion euros ($14 billion) of additional budget cuts for 2013 and 2014 to convince the euro area, the ECB and the IMF to continue to disburse funds.
Spain’s 10-year bond yield climbed 23 basis points to 7.50 percent today, the most since the single currency came into being in 1999, after El Pais reported that six Spanish regions may ask for aid from the central government.
National Bank of Greece, the country’s largest lender, dropped 11 percent to 1.10 euros. Alpha Bank AE (ALPHA), Greece’s second-biggest bank, dropped 9.2 percent to 99 euro cents. EFG Eurobank Ergasias SA (EUROB) and Piraeus Bank SA (TPEIR) fell 11 percent to 58.8 euro cents and 9.6 percent to 19.8 cents, respectively.
Public Power Corp., the country’s largest electricity provider, plummeted 17 percent to 2.25 euros.
State-owned companies that are part of Greece’s asset-sales plan also fell. Water utilities Athens Water Supply & Sewage Co. SA and Thessaloniki Water Supply & Sewage Co. dropped 5.3 percent to 2.86 euros and 5.6 percent to 3.36 euros, respectively.
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