Greece still holds EU’s highest jobless rate
The Eurostat statistics agency said yesterday unemployment in Greece fell slightly to 21.7 percent in April compared to 22 percent in March. With 1.041 million unemployed, Greece had the highest jobless rate in the European Union, according to Eurostat. Meanwhile unemployment in the eurozone fell to 9.1 percent in June compared to a revised 9.2 percent in May. The jobless rate of 9.1 percent was the lowest since February 2009. a monthly decline of 1.40 percent for its benchmark, mainly due to the drop recorded yesterday that was led by bank stocks. Today’s session is seen as crucial because a lack of reaction by buyers will signify a further drop in the medium term. The Athens Exchange (ATHEX) general index ended at 812.21 points, shedding 0.95 percent from Friday’s 820.02 points. The large-cap FTSE-26 index contracted 1.02 percent to 2,115.71 points, while small-caps expanded 0.10 percent. The banks index slumped 2.24 percent, with Alpha giving up 3.79 percent. Public Power Corporation bucked the trend to jump 7.18 percent, but Viohalco decreased 3.13 percent and Hellenic Exchanges conceded 3.09 percent. In total 41 stocks recorded gains, 66 posted losses and 21 closed unchanged. Turnover amounted to 55 million euros, down from Friday’s 56.3 million. In Nicosia the general index of the Cyprus Stock Exchange declined 0.17 percent to close at 76.45 points. National Bank of Greece mortgage covered bonds issued under the soft bullet program and the conditional pass-through program is not affected by the asset reallocation and pledge of new assets recently performed by the issuer.