Text size

Israeli share prices rebounded firmly yesterday, but on thin turnover that does not portend a trend change. The session was flat until midday as sentiment on Greece improved, ahead of the event, it must be said.

The event in question is a confidence vote by the Greek parliament; the government headed by George Papandreou is expected to survive. A general global rally by equities was largely ascribed to fond expectations of that poll. Suddenly the world feels secure that Athens will institute new austerity measures that will work.

European shares had their best day in two months, gaining between 1% and 2.6%. They bounced from three-month closing lows as sentiment turned: Yesterday investors were feeling optimistic that Greece will get the financial support it needs to avoid defaulting next month, traders said. The FTSEurofirst 300 of top European shares rose 1.4% and the euro rose against the dollar.

Screens were green throughout Asia as well, with gains between 1% and 2%.

Over in Israel, the benchmark TA-25 index gained 1.5% to 1,223 points and the broader TA-100 index rose 1.4% to 1,106 points. Banks gained 2%. But as said, turnover was thin; the public did not stampede for shares. Government and corporate bonds gained as much as 0.3%.

"It was a good day after two bad weeks. Redemptions from mutual funds have stopped," said Ronen Berkovich, bond funds manager at Altshuler Shaham.

Visonic shares shot up 76% on heavy turnover - for that stock anyway - of NIS 2.5 million. The reason is the anticipated acquisition of the company by Tyco International according to a company valuation of $100 million. That's a cool 76% premium over its market capitalization on the Tel Aviv Stock Exchange.

Shares of Ormat Industries gained 5.5% after subsidiary Ormat Technologies, which is listed on Nasdaq, announced that it had won a big contract in New Zealand to build another geothermal power plant.

Stock market shell company Shaldieli surged 22% on reports it's conducting a reverse merger with a number of companies, including the Canadian firm Bontan, that will bring it into the oil and gas exploration industry.