Greek Stock Market Drops by 4.58% on Cyprus Worries

Greek Stock Market Drops by 4.58% on Cyprus Worries

The Greek stock market lost 4.58 percent in midday trading on Tuesday while investors waited for finalised details on how to absorb local units of Cypriot banks that were expected later in the day according to Piraeus Bank.

The Athex index fell to 886.57 points after already losing 2.44 percent at the open.

A sub-index of banking stocks was off by 4.11 percent meanwhile, as subsidiaries of two Cypriot banks, the Bank of Cyprus (BoC) and Laiki said in a statement that they would maintain a suspension of trading in their shares that began last week.

Greek press reports said that Piraeus Bank, the third largest Greek bank, was set to move up to number two once it absorbed the local units of the two Cypriot banks, which would add 21 billion euros ($27 billion) in credits, and 13 billion euros in deposits spread across 330 branches staffed by 5,500 employees.

Piraeus was thus set to exceed 100 billion euros in assets, with outstanding loans of 70 billion euros and 52 billion euros in deposits, according to the semi-official press agency Ana.

In Cyprus meanwhile, banks remained closed for an 11th day amid a crisis that erupted within the framework of an international bailout deal, and which led on Tuesday to the tendered resignation of BoC chairman Andreas Artemis.