Africa Israel advances 1.5%; Cadbury jumps on Kraft bid

Breaking news (photo credit: JPOST STAFF)
Breaking news
(photo credit: JPOST STAFF)
SHARES
The TA-25 Index climbed for the first time this week, increasing8.65, or 0.9 percent, to 965.98 at the close in Tel Aviv. Investorstraded about NIS 1.46 billion in shares and convertible securities.
Africa Israel Investments, the real-estate developer owned byLev Leviev, climbed from a five-month low, advancing 1.5%. AFIDevelopment, the company's Russian property arm, was initiated with a"buy" recommendation at Bank of America.
Biondvax Pharmaceuticals, the maker of intranasalflu vaccines, rose 8.3%. The Health Ministry approved the first andsecond stages of a clinical trial for the company's international fluvaccine among patients aged 55 to 75.
Brainsway advanced 2%. The biopharmaceutical company receivedapproval from the Italian Health Ministry to sell its Deep TMS devicefor treating depression.
Menorah Mivtachim Holdings declined the most insix months, sliding 7.9%. The insurer said the insurance supervisorplanned to investigate backdated investments at the company's unit.
WALL STREET
Closed for Labor Day.
EUROPE
European stocks rose for a third day as a resurgence of mergerspeculation boosted food and beverage stocks and mining companies andthe Group of 20 nations agreed on steps to shore up the globalfinancial system.
Cadbury, the world's largest confectioner, jumped 38% afterrejecting a $16.7b. offer from Kraft Foods. Mergers and acquisitionsare recovering amid signs the worst recession since World War II iseasing. Last week, Baker Hughes, the third-largest oilfield-servicesprovider, agreed to buy BJ Services for $5.5b., and Walt Disney said itwould purchase Marvel Entertainment for about $4b.
National benchmark indexes rose in all of the 18 western European markets. The UK's FTSE 100 advanced 1.7% to 4,933.18.
ASIA
Asian stocks rose, giving the MSCI Asia Pacific Index itsbiggest advance in two weeks, as the Group of 20 nations agreed onsteps to shore up the financial system, while merger speculationboosted technology shares.
Japan's Nikkei 225 Stock Average climbed 1.3% to 10,320.94.China's Shanghai Composite Index gained 0.7% after the governmentraised the amount foreign funds can invest in equities. Hong Kong'sHang Seng Index advanced 1.5%.
CURRENCIES
The shekel weakened from an almost nine-month high against thedollar as traders increased bets the Bank of Israel will buy dollars tolimit the currency's gains.
The shekel dropped as much as 0.6% and was down 0.4% at 3.7569per dollar at 4:56 p.m. in Tel Aviv, versus 3.7425 per dollar onFriday, its strongest level since December 18.
The dollar weakened to $1.4330 per euro as of 6:10 p.m. in London, from $1.4297 on Friday.
COMMODITIES
Oil was little changed near $68 a barrel as the US drivingseason wound down and the profit margin for turning crude into gasolineand distillate fuels declined, further depressing demand.
Crude oil for October delivery rose 11 cents, or 0.2%, to$68.13 a barrel at 12:23 p.m. local time in electronic trading on theNew York Mercantile Exchange.
Immediate-delivery bullion added 79 cents, or 0.1%, to $995.19an ounce by 4:52 p.m. in London. December gold futures slipped 10 centsto $996.60 an ounce in electronic trading on the New York MercantileExchange's Comex division. Comex floor trading in New York and Chicagowas closed for Labor Day.