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Athens News Agency: News in English, 09-08-28

Athens News Agency: News in English Directory - Previous Article - Next Article

From: The Athens News Agency at <http://www.ana.gr/>

CONTENTS

  • [01] Gov't unveils special land use plan
  • [02] Hellenic Postbank reports 123 mln euros profits in H1
  • [03] Papandreou in Paris for French socialist party con'f
  • [04] Aegean Airlines reports sharply improved H1 results
  • [05] NBG: 708mln euros net profit in H1
  • [06] PPI down 11% in July
  • [07] Stocks end flat on Fri.

  • [01] Gov't unveils special land use plan

    Environment, Town Planning and Public Works Minister George Souflias has offered for public consideration the Special Land Plan for the Coastal Region and the Islands, stressing that it is another "very important structural intervention that is part of the great effort for the creation, for the first time in Greece, of an integrated land plan."

    The minister added that "with the specific Special Framework we are at last bringing order regarding what one can do and where, on the islands and our coastal region. We are restricting bulding, we are highlighting natural beauty, we are supporting sustainable development and we are handling the needs of local societies."

    [02] Hellenic Postbank reports 123 mln euros profits in H1

    Hellenic Postbank on Friday reported pre-tax profits of 122.94 million euros in the first half of 2009, from a loss of 7.81 million euros in the corresponding period last year, adding that its non-performing loans rate rose to 0.96 pct from 0.87 pct in Dec. 31, 2008.

    Investment portfolio grew by 52.03 pct, the loans portfolio grew by 4.0 pct from the start of the year and by 15.15 pct compared with the same period in 2008, while saving deposits grew 9.48 pct and 10.62 pct over the same periods, respectively.

    Commenting on the results, bank chairman Aggelos Philippidis said the bank raised its equity capital by 526.26 million euros, using part of its high liquidity on investments, offering adequate funding to the main sectors of the economy.

    Consumer lending grew 0.71 pct in the first half to 1.9 billion euros, while mortgage loans rose 1.98 pct to 4.568 billion euros. Credit card loans grew 26.43 pct to 241.82 million euros, while saving deposits jumped 9.48 pct to 12.274 billion euros. The bank's equity capital totaled 906.01 million euros, sharply up from 532.16 million euros at the end of 2008.

    [03] Papandreou in Paris for French socialist party con'f

    Main opposition PASOK leader and Socialist International (SI) President George Papandreou departed for Paris on Friday to attend the summer sessions of the University of La Rochelle and the French socialist party, party spokesman announced.

    Papandreou will address the event's plenary session on Saturday on the theme of "Geopolitics of the Crisis".

    [04] Aegean Airlines reports sharply improved H1 results

    Įegean Airlines on Friday reported improved first half results, with sales rising 5.0 pc to 275.5 million euros, operating pre-tax, interest, amortization and leasing expenses (EBITDAR) jumping 43 pct to 42.5 million euros, pre-tax profits jumping 135 pct to 18.2 million euros and net after tax profits soaring 143 pct to 13.4 million euros.

    The Greek airline company attributed its sharply improved results to a significant drop in international oil prices and benefits from a renewal of its aircraft fleet.

    Aegean Airlines continued expanding its service network, adding new flights to Paris, Berlin, Brussels, Barcelona, Venice and Paphos, Cyprus and is soon expecting to inaugurate an Athens-Istanbul route.

    The company said passenger traffic rose 9 pct in the first half to 2.9 million passengers.

    Dimitris Geroyiannis, Aegean Airlines' chief executive, commenting on the results said conditions in the air transport market remained difficult and said that it was extremely difficult to make safe projections over future financial results.

    [05] NBG: 708mln euros net profit in H1

    National Bank Group on Friday said its net profits totaled 708 million euros in the first half of the year, up 13 pct from the same period in 2008, while net profits in the second quarter totaled 391 million euros, up 23 pct.

    Commenting on the results, Takis Arapoglou, the bank's chairman and chief executive, said a medium-term strategy followed by the bank - boosting revenues, cutting spending and prudent risk management - has established National Bank's position among the top European banks on capital adequacy and quality, liquidity and operating profitability.

    "Our second quarter results and first half results are proof of our capabilities," the Greek banker said, adding that National Bank would focus on establishing its leading position in Southeastern Europe.

    Net profits from activities in Greece grew 41 pct to 249 million euros in the second quarter, with first half profits totaling 426 million euros. Finansbank reported a 10-pct increase in its second quarter results (from the first quarter) with first half profits totaling 219 million euros despite higher provisions. Finansbank accounted for 31 pct of National Bank Group's profits.

    Activities in southeast Europe fell 40 pct in the first half compared with the same period in 2008 to 64 million euros, accounting for 9.0 pct of the Group's profits.

    National Bank's equity capital return rate was 24 pct in the second quarter, two percentage points above the first quarter figure. Provisions totaled 494 million euros (of which 260 million euros in the second quarter), up from 180 million euros last year.

    Despite adverse conditions, National Bank said its loan portfolio totaled 68.5 billion euros in the first half, reflecting a 5.0 pct increase in lending in Greece so far this year, for annual growth rate of 11 pct compared with the same period in 2008.

    Retail banking loans totaled 31.5 billion euros in the January-June period, for an annual growth rate of 13 pct. Mortgage loans grew 12 pct to around 20 billion euros, while consumer and credit card growth was 12 pct to 7.0 billion euros.

    Saving deposits totaled 71 billion euros, 10 pct higher from the first half of 2008.

    [06] PPI down 11% in July

    Greeceās Producers' Price composite index (measuring both the domestic and foreign markets) dropped 11 pct in July, compared with the corresponding month last year, after an increase of 15.5 pct recorded in the 2007-2008 period, the National Statistical Service announced on Friday.

    The statistics agency, in a report, said the producerās price index fell 0.7 pct in July from June, after an increase of 1.3 pct recorded in the corresponding period last year.

    [07] Stocks end flat on Fri.

    Greek stocks ended flat in the Athens Stock Exchange on Friday, with the composite index losing 0.16 pct to end at 2,540.40 points. Turnover was a strong 269 million euros, of which 16.9 million euros were block trades.

    Most sectors moved downwards, with the Banks (2.68 pct), Chemicals (2.55 pct) and Health (2.45 pct) suffering the heaviest percentage losses of the day, while Travel (5.19 pct), Telecoms (4.02 pct) and Oil (3.99 pct) scored gains.

    The FTSE 20 index eased 0.83 pct, the FTSE 40 index ended 0.84 pct higher and the FTSE 80 index fell 0.86 pct. Broadly, decliners led advancers by 128 to 78 with another 56 issues unchanged.


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