Nasdaq and rising stocks in Europe lifted Tel Aviv stocks to 0.6% gains on Wednesday, after three consecutive days of losses. But turnover stayed low at NIS 178 million.
Leading indices opened with 0.7% gains despite news of a pre-opening terrorist attack in Jerusalem that caused only minor injuries. Stocks hovered between 0.5% to 1% gains throughout most of the session but eroded slightly toward closing.
The Maof-25 index of blue chips and the TA-100 index each gained 0.6%, and technology shares climbed 1%.
Banks closed mixed. Bank Leumi dropped 0.8% on NIS 10 million turnover, Bank Hapoalim and Mizrahi Bank each closed off 0.1%. Bank Discount closed up 0.4%. Investment house UBS today rated the Israeli banking sector a Hold following weak quarterly reports, and on expectation of big provisions for doubtful debts in the coming quarters. It recommended overweighting Hapoalim at the expense of Leumi.
ECI Telecom (Nasdaq:ECIL) gains on Wall Street yesterday lifted Koor Industries (Nasdaq:KOR) by 1.1% on NIS 4.6 million turnover.
Phone company Bezeq rose by 1.7% on NIS 10 million turnover. Merrill Lynch said it has several nibbles at the state's controlling stake in the company. Also, its putative rivals, the cable TV companies, all published weak reports for the third quarter.
Agrochemicals firm Makhteshim Agan Industries closed up 0.4% after its successful notes issue last week. The notes closed off 0.1% on NIS 4 million volume of trade, and options dropped 4.4% on NIS 2 million turnover.
Israel Chemicals closed with 0.3% gains on NIS 3.5 million turnover. Nessuah Zannex analyst Haim Israel reiterated a Hold rating for the firm and a price target of NIS 4.6, 7.5% above the market.
Teva Pharmaceuticals (Nasdaq:TEVA) dropped 1.3% on the session's biggest turnover, NIS 18 million.
Elron Electronic Industries (Nasdaq:ELRN) rose by 1.1%, Formula Systems (Nasdaq:FORTY) closed with 1.3% gain, Nice Systems (Nasdaq:NICE) closed down 0.8%, and Magal Security Systems (Nasdaq:MAGS) plunged 8%.
IDB group stocks closed with gains of more than 1%. IDB Holding Corporation and IDB Development Corporation each climbed 1.6%, Clal Industries climbed 2.2%, and Discount Investments gained 0.4%.