Central bank governor Stanley Fischer
Bank of Israel Governor Stanley Fischer. Photo by Tomer Appelbaum
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Israel may have two Nobel prizes in economics to its credit, but average Israelis know considerably less about finance and economics than do their peers in developed nations.

So shows a survey released Sunday by the Central Bureau of Statistics, which found that 28% of adult Israelis could define the meaning of inflation and only two thirds knew that a rise in the consumer price index raises the cost of living. Just over half failed to answer correctly whether "investments with high returns generally carry a higher degree of risk."

Some 55% couldn't correctly answer the question, "Does a diversified portfolio of investments reduce risk?" No more than 40% could calculate the cost of a NIS 1,000 loan at 2%.

Among countries belonging to the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development 82% could calculate the cost of a loan and 80% could define inflation.

The CBS survey also found that 28% of the public has neither a pension plan nor managers insurance.

The survey also found that only 57% of all Israelis have savings in their bank account, 35% a provident fund and 37% an advanced-training fund (keren hishtalmut ). Only 8% of the public has investments in a mutual fund or exchanger-traded fund (teudot sal ) although a larger percentage own stocks and bonds directly.