Italian bonds hit Tel Aviv hard
The benchmark TA-25 index dropped 1.6% yesterday to close at 1,062 points and the broader TA-100 index fell 1.4% to end the day at 981 points.
Stocks fell sharply across the board on the Tel Aviv Stock Exchange yesterday. After small gains in the late morning, continued fears about the debt crisis in Europe took over and the major indexes plunged in the afternoon. An Italian bond offering at record high yields spooked investors - here as well as in Europe - and cast a pall over the entire market.
The benchmark TA-25 index dropped 1.6% yesterday to close at 1,062 points and the broader TA-100 index fell 1.4% to end the day at 981 points. All the major indexes were well in the red. The TA-Banks index plunged 1.5% and the Real Estate-15 index lost 1.2%. The TA-Insurance index stood out - and not in a positive way - with a plunge of 3.9%. The Biomed index lost 1.1% and the BlueTech-50 index fell 0.3%. The Oil and Gas Exploration index lost 1.7% for the day. The TA-Communications index plunged 4.1%. Turnover was slim once again at NIS 1.07 billion.
The large-cap corporate TelBond indexes lost between 0.2% to 0.4% for the day, and the TelBond-Shekel index fell 0.3%. Government bonds were down slightly .
Another factor affecting the TASE yesterday - for the worse - was the continued shocks in the communications sector, as it seems more and more likely that Ilan Ben-Dov's deal to sell Scailex, the controlling owner of the Partner cellular operator, are running into serious trouble. Institutional investors, along with support form the Finance Ministry, are presenting a solid front against the deal, and proposed haircut. The other major news in the telecom sector was the announcement by the Communications Ministry that it was looking to open the multi-channel television industry to competition.
European stock markets lost ground ahead of a Greek vote on Sunday and fears that Spain's financing problems may spread to Italy. The question of whether Greece will remain in the euro zone after the election and the potential impact of Europe's woes on global growth also affected sentiment.
Asian markets rose slightly, before the losses in Europe. Developing markets also rose slightly. In Europe, the FTSEurofirst 300 index of top regional companies closed down 0.3%. MSCI's all-country world equity index rose 0.4%.