Tel Aviv stocks gain the most in a month

El Al Israel Airlines Ltd. snapped four days of declines, climbing 3.4%.

stock exchange 88 224 (photo credit: Bloomberg)
stock exchange 88 224
(photo credit: Bloomberg)
SHARES TEL AVIV The Tel Aviv-25 Index gained the most in a month, rising 15.14, or 1.5 percent, to 1,062.29 at the close in Tel Aviv, as 17 members increased, five dropped and three were unchanged. Trading ended at 2:15 p.m. instead of 5:30 p.m. because of a labor union dispute. Delek Group Ltd. gained for a second day, adding 3.5%. El Al Israel Airlines Ltd. snapped four days of declines, climbing 3.4%. The country's largest carrier said it was in talks with Boeing Co. to buy four 777-200 aircraft for delivery in 2012. Elbit Systems Ltd. increased the most since January 31, increasing 2.8%. Perrigo Co. gained the most in more than a month, advancing 6.3. Radvision Ltd. retreated for a fourth day, dropping 2.5%. Teva Pharmaceutical Industries Ltd. dropped for a fifth day, declining 1%. AstraZeneca Plc, the maker of the Seroquel anti-psychotic treatment, said the trial date for patent litigation against companies seeking to sell copies of its second-biggest product, including Teva, had been set for August 11. WALL STREET Wall Street advanced in choppy trading, extending the huge rally a day earlier that was triggered by the Federal Reserve's plans to pump liquidity into distressed financial markets. On Tuesday, the Dow had surged 416 points, the blue chips' biggest one-day point gain since 2002. The tone in markets around the world has clearly improved as investors appear hopeful the Fed's plan can help jump-start the moribund credit markets. The market's extension of gains gave some investors hope that perhaps the rally will hold and not go down as a one-day pop. In midday trading, the Dow Jones industrial average rose 80.68, or 0.66%, to 12,237.49. It had initially dipped, shot up more than 140 points, then pared its gains. Broader stock indicators also recovered from an early decline. The Standard & Poor's 500 index rose 4.83, or 0.37%, to 1,325.48, and the Nasdaq composite index rose 13.10, or 0.58%, to 2,268.86. EUROPE European stocks strengthened for a second successive day, following a positive response on Wall Street to the global central banks' latest attempt to add liquidity to the money markets. The Dow Jones Stoxx 600 Index closed up 1.2%, at 311.5. In terms of national markets, the UK's FTSE 100 Index rose 1.5% to 5,776.4 while France's CAC-40 Index also gained 1.5% to 4,697.1. Germany's DAX Index climbed 1.2% to 6,599.4. Financial stocks benefited in particular as optimism returned. Meanwhile, in the UK, Alistair Darling delivered his first budget as chancellor of the exchequer, saying the UK could "weather economic storms." But David Brown, chief European economist at Bear Stearns, said the budget sounded a very clear message - growth is slowing, inflation risks are rising and government borrowing could rise. ASIA Asian stocks rose in response to a concerted effort by the Fed and other central banks to ease pressure on the world's credit markets. Stocks in Japan and Hong Kong pared gains in afternoon trading after the initial euphoria wore off. Japan's Nikkei 225 index closed 1.6% higher at 12,861.13 after rising as much as 3.2%. Hong Kong's Hang Seng index pared gains to close 1.9% higher at 23,422.76. Markets in Australia, South Korea, Malaysia and Taiwan rose, while China's key index fell to a seven-month low.