Leading TASE indices are climbing midday Thursday on steady upward trade in Europe, after a cumulative 5% loss for the Maof-25 since January 6. The Maof-25 is gaining 0.16%, and the TA-100 is climbing 0.1% while the Tel Tech is slipping 0.4%. Turnover is NIS 75 million.

Tower Semiconductor (Nasdaq:TSEM) is dropping 4%, having plunged 5.1% yesterday. The fall is due to the 5.1% drop in the semiconductor index in the U.S. last night, and the relatively low premium bond issue, which has investors opting for the bonds rather than the company shares.

Teva Pharmaceuticals (Nasdaq:TEVA) is up 0.6% after opening with a negative 0.3% arbitrage gap. The company yesterday received tentative FDA approval for its anti-depression drug Mirtazapine. The share is once again taking central stage on the TASE, as volume crawls back down.

Elco Holdings is gaining another 6% to the 7.5% rise last night, following its purchase of the French electronic appliances giant Brandt for $225 million. Turnover for the share is NIS 1.6 million.

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Nice Systems (Nasdaq:NICE) is correcting for the second consecutive session, rising 1.3% on NIS 2.3 million turnover.

Bank shares are steady with a negative bias. Bank Leumi is down 0.23% on the bank's news of an early retirement plan estimated to cost NIS 120 million. Bank Hapoalim is down 0.11% as is Mizrahi Bank.

IDB group shares are on the decline. IDB Development is down 0.15%, IDB Holdings is dipping 0.6% and Discount Investment Corporation sheds 0.2%.