This Day On The Street
Continue to site
ADVERTISEMENT
This account is pending registration confirmation. Please click on the link within the confirmation email previously sent you to complete registration.
Need a new registration confirmation email? Click here

Israeli Markets Lashed by War

TEL AVIV -- The stock market here plunged Thursday following the most serious standoff yet between the Israeli army and Hezbollah troops since Israel withdrew from southern Lebanon in 2000.

The Tel Aviv 25 index, representing the country's largest corporations by market capitalization, fell 4.25% and has now fallen 8.2% in the last two trading days. The Tel Aviv 100 index fell 4.1% Thursday and is down 8% since Tuesday, while the banks index got slashed by 5.35%, bringing its two-day decline to 10%. Many investors view Israeli bank shares as being most exposed to a possible economic downturn as consumer spending gets hurt.

"There is a certain panic in the market," says Gilad Altshuler, investment manager at the Tel Aviv-based brokerage firm Altshuler Shaham. "People are selling every type of security; we see it especially in currency trading and in declines in government bonds."

The local currency, the shekel, has dropped about 2.5% compared to the dollar in the last two days.

"Most of all, there is no selectiveness among the selling of various securities," Altshuler adds. "Everyone is getting cut regardless if they are export-oriented companies that really shouldn't be affected at all by what is happening in the country."

Early Wednesday morning, Hezbollah opened a multiple-front attack on Israel's northern border, killing eight Israeli soldiers and kidnapping two others. Israeli forces retaliated with a wide attack on various Lebanese infrastructure targets, including the bombing of Beirut's airport, killing dozens, according to published reports. Hezbollah continued shooting missiles on Israeli cities, including the port city of Haifa.

Although the Israeli government has yet to announce a concrete strategy or timeline, various military experts and economists are estimating this situation may continue for several weeks.

Among the major companies that fell in Thursday's trading is the diversified holdings company Africa-Israel Investments, which lost 6%; the renewable-energy utility Ormat Technologies (ORA - Get Report), which dropped 2.4% on the Tel Aviv market and 3.3% in New York; the real estate conglomerate Gazit Globe, which owns the U.S.-based REIT Equity One (EQY - Get Report), declined 2%; Israel Chemicals Corporation fell 2%; and the holding company Delek Group dropped 4%.

1 of 2

Check Out Our Best Services for Investors

Action Alerts PLUS

Portfolio Manager Jim Cramer and Director of Research Jack Mohr reveal their investment tactics while giving advanced notice before every trade.

Product Features:
  • $2.5+ million portfolio
  • Large-cap and dividend focus
  • Intraday trade alerts from Cramer
Quant Ratings

Access the tool that DOMINATES the Russell 2000 and the S&P 500.

Product Features:
  • Buy, hold, or sell recommendations for over 4,300 stocks
  • Unlimited research reports on your favorite stocks
  • A custom stock screener
Stocks Under $10

David Peltier uncovers low dollar stocks with serious upside potential that are flying under Wall Street's radar.

Product Features:
  • Model portfolio
  • Stocks trading below $10
  • Intraday trade alerts
14-Days Free
Only $9.95
14-Days Free
To begin commenting right away, you can log in below using your Disqus, Facebook, Twitter, OpenID or Yahoo login credentials. Alternatively, you can post a comment as a "guest" just by entering an email address. Your use of the commenting tool is subject to multiple terms of service/use and privacy policies - see here for more details.
Submit an article to us!
SYM TRADE IT LAST %CHG
EQY $25.69 0.00%
ORA $36.84 0.00%
ORBK $18.46 0.00%
NICE $58.50 0.00%
PRGO $198.98 0.00%

Markets

DOW 17,826.30 -279.47 -1.54%
S&P 500 2,081.18 -23.81 -1.13%
NASDAQ 4,931.8150 -75.9760 -1.52%

Partners Compare Online Brokers

Free Reports

Top Rated Stocks Top Rated Funds Top Rated ETFs