Tel Aviv-25 Index rises

BioCancell Therapeutics Inc., an Israeli biotechnology company, jumps 4.5%.

By NEWS AGENCIES
May 20, 2008 10:53
3 minute read.

 
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SHARES TEL AVIV The Tel Aviv-25 Index rose for the first time in three days, adding 14.7, or 1.3 percent, to 1,107.73, as 17 shares gained, six declined and two were unchanged. BioCancell Therapeutics Inc. jumped 4.5%. The Israeli biotechnology company and Pro-Pharmaceuticals Inc., the US developer of technology to treat cancer, announced they will collaborate to develop a treatment for the disease. Elbit Systems Ltd. (ESLT IT) advanced 5.1%. Israel's biggest non-government defense company will probably say Tuesday that first-quarter profit rose about 33% to $537.6 million, according to the median estimate of four analysts surveyed by Bloomberg News. Nice Systems Ltd. rose 3.1%. The maker of software to record and analyze phone calls said China's Ministry for Railways has selected its video-surveillance system for a high-speed rail line expected to start running in 2009. WALL STREET US stocks rose, sending the Standard & Poor's 500 Index to a four-month high, after analysts advised clients to buy transport, bank and technology shares and an index of economic indicators unexpectedly advanced. Union Pacific Corp., the largest US railroad, climbed to a record after Stifel Nicolaus & Co. upgraded the stock to "buy." Texas Instruments Inc. helped push a gauge of chipmakers to the highest level this year as Citigroup Inc. increased its profit estimate and Goldman Sachs Group Inc. said the industry will benefit from lower supply. The S&P 500 added 3.6 points, or 0.3%, to 1,428.95 at 2:19 p.m. in New York. The Dow Jones Industrial Average increased 63.34, or 0.5%, to 13,050.14. The Nasdaq Composite Index slipped 5.57, or 0.2%, to 2,523.28, led lower by a 6.3% retreat in SanDisk Corp. EUROPE UK stocks advanced, led by mining companies after Citigroup Inc. recommended buying shares of Anglo American Plc and Vedanta Resources Plc and Credit Suisse Group raised its price estimate for Kazakhmys Plc. British Sky Broadcasting Group Plc climbed after Deutsche Bank AG upgraded the shares. British Airways Plc, Europe's third-largest airline, and Wolseley Plc limited gains as brokerages said investors should sell the stock. The FTSE 100 Index gained 72.2, or 1.2%, to 6,376.5. ASIA Most Asian markets advanced modestly, with rising oil prices leading investors to snap up energy and resource companies. The oil-led gains lifted Tokyo's benchmark index to a four-month high and boosted the Hang Seng in Hong Kong. The Nikkei 225 Index rose 0.4% to 14,269.6 points, its highest close since January 10. The Hang Seng Index rose 0.5% to 25,742.2. Chinese coal producers led the way in the territory after Goldman Sachs upgraded the sector. The benchmark Shanghai Composite Index, meanwhile, fell 0.5% to 3,604.8. Trading was thin in China, with investors staying on the sidelines as the country observes a three-day mourning period for victims of last week's earthquake. Elsewhere, Australian shares rose for the fourth consecutive day. Stock benchmarks also rose in New Zealand, Taiwan and Indonesia. CURRENCIES The shekel strengthened for a sixth day against the dollar, to 3.3637 from 3.3845 on Friday. The dollar gained the most against the euro in four days and strengthened versus the yen as global stocks rallied and the index of leading US economic indicators unexpectedly rose in April. The dollar rose 0.5% to $1.5507 per euro at 1:03 p.m. in New York, from $1.5577 on Friday, when it weakened to $1.5601, the lowest since May 1. COMMODITIES Crude oil was little changed amid skepticism that Saudi Arabia's decision to increase output by 300,000 barrels a day will be sufficient to reduce prices. Crude oil for June delivery declined 26 cents to $126.03 a barrel at 11:26 a.m. on the New York Mercantile Exchange. The contract climbed to $127.82 on Friday, the highest since trading began in 1983. Prices are 94% higher than a year ago.

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