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BUX falls on Greece

Telco

The Budapest Stock Exchangeʼs main BUX index finished down 1.52% at 21,879.14 Friday after rising 1.14% Thursday. It is up 31.53% from year-end, after losing 10.40% last year.

The Budapest parquet was on a descending leg of the last few daysʼ roller coaster due to week-end profit taking, headwinds from European markets following the latest, unpromising, twists in the Greek debt talks soap, and a sudden flare-up of fighting in the Eastern part of neighbouring Ukraine.

Locally, latest industrial figures from April were not supportive either, showing a small monthly fall after six months of growth, and a sharp slow-down of annual expansion with new orders and orders stocks growth also on the decline.

Permanent and longer-term worries of international investors who far outweigh residents in the market were outlined in a note from Eurasia Group. Hungary is likely to maintain its nationalist and statist policies as suggested by its recent deal with German energy firm RWE to purchase some of RWEʼs local assets, Eurasia said. Further state acquisitions in the utilities and energy sector can also be expected. Punitive taxation and regulation is not on the wane for sectors dominated by foreign owners such as energy, retail, tobacco, telecommunications, media and banking sectors. Those are set to remain vulnerable to economic nationalism in the medium to long term. "The burden on these sectors is likely to be bigger the less slowly the economy grows and the lower (the governing party) Fideszʼs popularity gets," Eurasia added.

Seen as the star of Hungaryʼs banking sector against all odds, OTP also corrected back in quick profit taking after rising 2.99% Thursday, even as SocGen started coverage of the share with a HUF 6701 target price and a "Buy" rating on Friday.

The bankʼs announcement late afternoon that it agreed to buy a small unit of an Italian bank in Serbia was neglected by investors.

OTP lost 2.54% to HUF 5,440 on turnover of HUF 3.01 bln from a HUF 4.96 bln session total, less than half the daily average this year.

MOL dipped 1.12% to HUF 14,525 on turnover of HUF 841m.

Magyar Telekom slid 0.24% to HUF 413 on turnover of HUF 266m.

Richter retreated 1.32% to HUF 4,352 on turnover of HUF 816m.

The bourseʼs mid-cap BUMIX went out 0.55% lower at 1,581.66.

Over the week, the BUX was down 2.01% after falling 0.23% the previous week.

OTP recovered 1.02% after tumbling 5.53% last week.

MOL dipped 2.91% after gaining 1.66% the previous week.

Magyar Telekom was off 3.50% after rising 2.88% last week.

Richter dropped 4.35% after a loss of 1.09% over the previous week.

The BUMIX dropped 1.63% after a win of 0.50% over last week.

Elsewhere in the region, WIG 20 in Warsaw was down 0.89%, while Pragueʼs PX dove 1.71%. Western Europeʼs major indices were all down ahead of their close Friday, FTSE100 in London 0.82%, DAX30 in Frankfurt 1.39%, and CAC40 in Paris 1.58%.

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