(photo credit: courtesy)
An anonymous campaign criticizing Israel Securities Authority chairman Shmuel
Hauser this week elicited rebukes from Finance Minister Yair Lapid and several
other economic policy leaders on Thursday.
In a phone call with Hauser,
Lapid said he rejected the personal nature of the campaign by “anonymous sources
with funds and hidden interests, whose entire objective is to threaten and
discourage a public servant doing an honest job without fear and without bias
for the good of the saving and investing public.”
The group at the center
of the campaign calls itself “Save TASE [Tel Aviv Stock Exchange],” though its
efforts have only yielded it 45 “Likes” on its Facebook page.
the week, it sent email messages blaming Hauser for poor performance at the TASE
to investment firms and media outlets . On Wednesday, a YouTube clip was
circulated critiquing him with statements such as “100 companies have already
left the stock exchange” and “the capital market is falling apart.”
also featured a clip of Mellanox CEO Eyal Waldman explaining how regulatory
burdens caused him to delist the company from the the exchange.
ISA’s own admission, an unruly proportion of Israeli companies opt for foreign
“exits,” and liquidity at the stock market has fallen dramatically.
Hauser has sought reforms to upend these trends, arguing for limited
deregulation and accentuating the importance to both free the hands of the
market while keeping it safe from systemic harm.
Hauser has aroused
controversy in the past; the decisions of both the stock exchange’s CEO and
chairman to step down this summer was widely viewed as a result of a power
struggle between them and Hauser.
The Finance Ministry’s director of
capital markets Dorit Selinger, Bank Supervisor Dudu Zaken and Anti-Trust
Authority head David Gilo issued a joint statement on Thursday decrying the
“While public debate around the policies of one regulator or
another are appropriate and desirable, in this case it looks as though
boundaries were crossed, and an attempt to influence policy has become an
unbridled assault against a public servant,” the statement read.