Greek shares plunge on mixed day for European markets

Athens banking stocks lost more than 25% as investors reacted to post-election policies

European stocks were little changed as companies led by the Nordic region's Nordea Bank and Sweden's Electrolux advanced on positive earnings reports, and tech companies were boosted by news of Apple's record profits, but Greek stocks tumbled.

Dublin The Iseq slid 0.9 per cent as its biggest stocks recorded mixed fortunes.

Building materials group CRH closed down fractionally at €21.70. Aer Lingus slipped 2.2 per cent to €2.37, on a day when the bidder for the airline, British Airways' parent company IAG, met Government officials to discuss the future of its shareholding. Ryanair, which is its rival's biggest shareholder, fell 1.1 per cent to €10.44.

Fruit distributor Fyffes fell 3.8 per cent to €1.09, while food groups Kerry and Glanbia also finished lower, with Kerry closing at €63.83, down 1.8 per cent, and Glanbia closing at €14.35, down 2 per cent.


However, drinks group C&C climbed 1 per cent to €3.40 and Origin Enterprises also posted a 2.3 per cent gain, closing at €7.98. A day after it bought Belgian company Joris Ide, insulation maker Kingspan enjoyed a good session, surging 6 per cent to €16.65.

London UK stocks rose for the ninth day in 10, with the FTSE 100 index of blue-chip shares finishing up 0.2 per cent at the close of trading.

ARM Holdings, which provides the chip technology to Apple, benefited from the US giant's better-than-expected performance as its shares rose 2 per cent to 1,049 pence.

Among the fallers, sustainable technologies firm Johnson Matthey dropped 3 per cent. The biggest riser in the FTSE 100 Index was brewer SABMiller which closed up 4.6 per cent at 3,594.5 pence. The biggest faller was supermarket group Morrisons, which closed down 6.2 per cent at 186.3 pence.

Europe Greek stocks slid 9.2 per cent, while a Greek banking index hit a record low after a 27 per cent plunge, amid investor fears that the new government's anti-austerity stance will jeopardise liquidity. National Bank of Greece and Piraeus Bank plunged at least 25 per cent. The Athens market has lost 15 per cent of its value this week.

Shares in Greek utility PPC and Piraeus Port Authority tumbled by 13.9 per cent and 7.3 per cent respectively after the new government said it would stop the planned sale of a 67 per cent stake in Piraeus Port Authority.

Germany’s Dax index climbed 0.8 per cent, with Lanxess surging 7.6 per cent in afternoon trade.

Shares in Electrolux were among the top gainers, rallying 12.1 per cent. Nordea, the Nordic region’s biggest bank by market value, soared by 8.8 per cent.

US Apple jumped 7.5 per cent after reporting a 30 per cent advance in quarterly revenue and a 38 per cent surge in net income to a record $18 billion. Boeing climbed 5.7 per cent.

Yahoo! advanced 1.3 per cent after announcing a spinoff of its stake in Alibaba Group. (Additional reporting: Bloomberg/Reuters)