Tel Aviv blue chips are up about 1% at mid-afternoon, after cutting steep morning gains.

A spate of selling on Tuesday brought the leading indices down, but the Wednesday session opened with gains of about 1.5%. But dropping prices in Europe and indications of losses on Nasdaq later today are dragging down the indices here at home. Teva Pharmaceuticals (Nasdaq:TEVA) on the other hand has lost none of its morning momentum, and is is powering ahead on huge volume.

The Maof-25 index is rising by 1% to 432.7 points and the TA-100 index is up 1.2% to 422.4 points. Tech stocks are up by a sharper 2.8%.

Teva is rising 3.6% on turnover of NIS 54 million, almost a third of the fairly hefty NIS 185 million total turnover so far. The company published its first quarter results this morning, reporting a 56% leap in net profit against the first quarter of 2000 to $54.8 million. Revenues climbed 46% against the parallel to $491 million.

Another dual-listed share rising strong is Nice Systems (Nasdaq:NICE), which is up 6.5%.

Investors are responding positively to reports that IDB Holding Corporation chairman Leon Recanati is considering merging Discount Investments with the entity being created from the merger of Clal Electronics and Clal Industries. The threesome-into-one might even be merged with IDB Development. All these belong to the IDB group, and all are holding companies, which creates a degree of redundancy.

IDB Holdings is up 3.4%, IDB Development is rising 2.5%, Discount Investments is gaining 2.8%, Clal Industries is climbing 4.8% and Clal Electronics is gaining 3.8%.

Formula Systems (Nasdaq:FORTY) is up 3.6%, closing an arbitrage gap of about that magnitude. Yesterday the company gained 7.6% after announcing that Israeli businessman Yossi Maiman has filed a bid for its controlling interest.

Phone company Bezeq is rising 1.9% on turnover of NIS 6.1 million, after receiving a Buy rating from investment house Ilanot Batucha. The analyst set Bezeq a price target of NIS 8.3, about 40% above Bezeq's market price.

Koor Industries (Nasdaq:KOR) is dropping 3.8% on profit-taking after 13% gains over two trading days. This week TheMarker.com revealed Koor's plan to split up, abolish its role as a broad-based holding company and hand out shares in its subsidiaries.

Tower Semiconductors (Nasdaq:TSEM) is slipping 2.6 after revealing decreasing first-quarter revenues and a slide back into the red after posting a meager $300,000 net profit for the fourth quarter.