Greece on Monday took another step away from crisis mode by reopening its stock markets after a five-week break, but as trading resumed, many shares listed on the stock exchange in the capital took a steep dive
Much of the rout was attributed to continuous uncertainty about the country’s liquidity buffer. The Athens lead index plummeted by almost 23%.
The drop in stock value was largely in line with analysts’ predictions. WallachBeth Capital Managing Director Ilya Feygin told Reuters to expect losses between 19% and 22%.
Beta Securities trader Takis Zamanis even went so far as to say that no single share would gain on the day.
Trading on the Athens bourse had been suspended in June as part of capital controls imposed with a view to stemming the harmful outflow of euros from the debt-stricken eurozone nation.
Since then, the government had agreed a framework bailout plan with its European Union partners in exchange for more reforms and budget austerity.
Greece’s Avgi newspaper reported the government was seeking €24bn ($26.37bn) in a first tranche of more rescue aid from international lenders in August, with a big chunk of the money meant to go towards recapitalising domestic banks.
But the European Commission indicated an agreement about payments in August was unlikely, meaning a new bridge loan would be necessary.
With banking shares comprising some 20% of overall stocks listed on the Athens bourse, the remaining financial uncertainty did not bode well for the rest of the trading day on Monday.