The Ticker

> • Following a rapid decline in the dollar's value against the shekel to its lowest rate in 12 years on June 9, to 3.21 shekels to the dollar, the Bank of Israel announced it is increasing its daily rate of dollar purchases to $100 million per day. The central bank's announcement gave the U.S. currency an immediate boost, and within two days it had climbed to a rate of 3.38 shekels to the dollar. The Bank of Israel's daily purchases will increase foreign currency reserves to $35-40 billion. • Intel inaugurated a new chip manufacturing plant, its second facility in Kiryat Gat, on July 1. The new plant was constructed at a cost of $3.5 billion, and when fully operational in September is slated to have a daily output of $10 million. Intel has been operating here for more than 30 years and is the largest foreign company in the country. • The Tel Aviv Stock Exchange (TASE) and NYSE Euronext signed a memorandum of understanding intended to increase the number of companies listed in both Israel and the United States. NYSE Euronext is the world's largest owner of stock exchanges. The TASE has signed similar agreements with the NASDAQ OMX Group and the London Stock Exchange Group. • The number of millionaires in Israel grew at twice the average world rate in 2007, jumping by 13.6%, according to a report issued by Merrill Lynch and Cap Gemini. There are now a total of 8,200 Israeli millionaires, defined as individuals with liquid assets of at least $1 million, excluding primary residence. The number of Israeli multi-millionaires, who have at least $30 million in the bank, grew by 12% in 2007, and now stands at 97. An article in Issue 8, August 4, 2008 of The Jerusalem Report. To subscribe to The Jerusalem Report click here.