TA-25 Index advances to a record, led by Hapoalim

Investors traded about NIS 2.09 billion in shares and convertible securities.

By NEWS AGENCIES
October 24, 2007 08:09
4 minute read.

 
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SHARES TEL AVIV The Tel Aviv-25 Index rose to a record Tuesday, following a rally in European and Asian markets. Bank Hapoalim and Bank Leumi Le-Israel paced the advance. The TA-25 added 14.18, or 1.2 percent, to 1,196.56 at the close in Tel Aviv. Investors traded about NIS 2.09 billion in shares and convertible securities. "There is a lot of optimism in the market" following the gains in global markets, said Ira Slomowitz, a trader at Excellence Nessuah Securities & Investments in Tel Aviv. "Investors are looking abroad for confirmation to continue buying here." Bank Leumi climbed NIS 0.43, or 2.4%, to NIS 18.49. Bank Hapoalim gained NIS 0.33, or 1.6%, to NIS 21.38. Africa Israel Investments increased NIS 6.70, or 1.7%, to NIS 394.60. AFI Development, the Russian real-estate unit of Africa Israel, said Monday it had made acquisitions valued at more than $120 million to bolster three projects. Elbit Medical Imaging, the medical company turned property developer, rose NIS 6.40, or 3%, to NIS 219.40. Plaza Centers NV, a unit of Elbit Medical, climbed as much as 6.8% to a record in London after the mall owner formed a venture to build offices and apartments in Romania. Elbit Systems advanced NIS 3.20, or 1.6%, to NIS 202. The country's biggest nongovernmental defense company said its joint venture with US airplane-instrument maker Rockwell Collins had won $60m. in orders for fighter aircraft gear. Makhteshim Agan Industries climbed NIS 1.15, or 3.3%, to NIS 35.85. Makhteshim will be pressed to increase its market share in a "dense space" after Permira Advisers LLP's purchase of Japanese insecticide maker Arysta LifeScience Corp., Haim Israel, an analyst at Merrill Lynch & Co., wrote in an e-mailed report Tuesday. Mellanox Technologies climbed NIS 2.32, or 2.7%, to NIS 89.71. The maker of computer server and storage products was expected to say third-quarter profit grew 140% to $6.9m., according to the median estimate of three analysts surveyed by Bloomberg News. Osem Investments rose NIS 1.82, or 4.2%, to NIS 45.05. Nestle SA, the world's largest food maker, and its Israeli unit, Osem, agreed to buy 51% of Israeli baby-formula maker Materna Laboratories for NIS 249m. from Maabarot Products. Maabarot jumped NIS 5.41, or 12%, to NIS 51.91. Radware dropped NIS 1.35, or 2.1%, to NIS 63.69. The company, whose technology helps make Internet networks run more efficiently, said its loss per share had widened to 14 cents in the third quarter from 6 cents last year, according to a statement distributed by PRNewswire. Retalix climbed NIS 2.50, or 3.1%, to NIS 83.80. The maker of software used by Carrefour SA and Tesco won a contract to provide software to PetroChina Co., China's largest oil company, strengthening its position in the Chinese market. WALL STREET Stocks climbed on Tuesday, with investor enthusiasm buoyed as Apple Inc. and blue-chip DuPont Co. reported quarterly profits that topped expectations, offsetting worries about consumer spending and the economy at large. The Dow Jones Industrial Average climbed 54.7 points, or 0.4%, to 13,621.7, with 26 of its 30 components in positive territory, led by American Express Co., up 1.9% after the credit-card and travel-services company tallied an 11% rise in profits for the third quarter. The S&P 500 rose 6.28 points, 0.4%, to 1,512.61, while the Nasdaq Composite advanced 20.93 points, or nearly 0.8%, to 2,774.86. EUROPE Stocks rose the most in a month after better-than-expected revenue and forecasts from Schneider Electric SA and Lonza Group AG eased concern profit growth is slowing. The Dow Jones Stoxx 600 Index added 1.1% to 379.78 as all industry groups gained. The Stoxx 50 rose 0.6%, and the Euro Stoxx 50, a measure for the euro region, increased 0.5%. National benchmarks advanced in all of the 18 western European markets. The UK's FTSE 100 added 0.9%, France's CAC 40 gained 0.8% and Germany's DAX increased 0.6%. ASIA Stocks rose the most in three weeks, after record customer growth boosted profit at China Mobile and Citic Securities agreed to buy a stake in Bear Stearns Cos. Mitsubishi UFJ Financial Group and National Australia Bank led gains by banks on speculation the $1b. investment in Bear Stearns, the securities firm hit hardest by the collapse of the US subprime mortgage market, will bolster confidence in financial companies. Hon Hai Precision Industry Co. led an advance by suppliers to Apple Inc. after the maker of iPhones posted fourth-quarter profit that exceeded analysts' estimates. Hong Kong's Hang Seng Index rose 3.5%, rebounding from its biggest points decline in seven years. The Morgan Stanley Capital International Asia-Pacific Index climbed 1.5% to 164.52 in Tokyo, while Japan's Nikkei Index rose 0.7% to 16,450.58. CURRENCY The shekel rose to a Bank of Israel fixing of 4.0250 against the dollar in Tel Aviv. The dollar was mixed Tuesday, slipping against the euro but gaining on the yen in line with firm stock prices. The euro was at $1.4245, up from $1.4171 in late US trading Monday, while the dollar bought 114.64 yen, up from 114.47 yen Monday. COMMODITIES Crude oil fell for a third day on forecasts that a government report on Wednesday will show US oil and gasoline inventories rose. Crude oil for December delivery fell 33 cents, or 0.4%, to $85.69 a barrel during morning action on the New York Mercantile Exchange. Gold rose after a decline in the value of the dollar boosted the appeal of the precious metal as an alternative investment. Gold futures for December delivery rose $4.40, or 0.6%, to $764.40 an ounce on the Comex division of the NYMEX.

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