Israeli financial markets were roiled on Thursday by the news that Sharon was fighting for his life.
The shekel sank 1.6 percent to the dollar in early morning trading, though it regained some ground by mid-morning, when it was off 0.9%. The Tel Aviv Stock Exchange's blue chip TA-25 index plunged 5.4% in heavy trading at the opening.
"I think the political uncertainty will dominate (the markets) in the next few days," said Koby Akai, head of the economics department at Meretz Investments Ltd. in Tel Aviv. "But in the end, regrettable as it may be, every person has a replacement, and the state of Israel and its economy are strong."