Bank Hapoalim's head of investment arrested for trading scheme

The Israel Securities Authority arrested on Tuesday the CEO of the Poalim Capital Markets company - the investment branch of Israel's second largest Bank Hapoalim - and a prominent stockbroker, following suspicions of a major insider trading scheme. Nir Burnstein, CEO of Poalim Capital Markets, allegedly warned stockbroker Ofer Izenberg, of expected losses to Bank Hapoalim due to the global economic crisis, and informed him of an expected drastic drop in the bank's share prices before the information was made public. Izenberg responded by wasting little time in selling Hapoalim stocks before the publication of a financial report on Hapoalim's losses, before buying them back up at a lower price after the report's appearance, making hundreds of thousands of shekels in the process. The ISA released both men to house arrest, where they have been ordered to remain until February 20.