Stocks rose on the Tel Aviv Stock Exchange Monday, as if Israeli markets were detached from events elsewhere in the world.
European markets fell, as did those in Asia, but local investors, like those most everywhere else, seemed to be waiting for the results of the U.S. elections on Tuesday, and trading was thin once again as a result.
The blue chip TA-25 index gained 0.6% to close at 1,223.96 points, and the broader TA-100 index rose 0.5% to end the day at 1,084.70 points. Most of the major indexes were in the green, though technology shares were mixed and the Oil and Gas Exploration index fell 1.1%.
The Banks-5 index climbed 2.2% while the Real Estate-15 index finished 0.3% higher. The Biomed index advanced 0.7%.
Turnover was lower than average once again, at under NIS 750 million.
Large-cap corporate bonds fell slightly, though the corporate TelBond indexes have risen 7% over the past year. Long-term bonds of IDB Holding stood out, rising 10.1% on heavy volume. Government bonds rose, with 10-year shekel-denominated Shahar bonds climbing 0.2% with yields falling to 3.94%.
Discount Investment corporation climbed 6.2% on reports of progress in talks between the IDB group and the KKR private equity firm over a loan of up to NIS 200 million.
Africa Israel gained 5.1% and continued its recent positive momentum as its subsidiaries, and in particular its AFI Development subsidiary in Russia, showed improved results.
Ofer Nimrodi's Israel Land Development Corporation Energy fell 2.7% for the day, after having fallen 6% earlier in trading. The company is interested in selling a large share of its oil and gas exploration rights in the Mira offshore field. ILDC Energy has been in contact with a number of possible buyers, including Noble Energy and the Delek Group.
The dollar rose strongly against the shekel as the forex trading week opened yesterday.
The dollar rose against most major currencies and the shekel followed suit with the representative rate set at NIS 3.9040, up 0.5% from Friday's rate. The euro fell 0.3% against the shekel to a representative rate of NIS 4.9870.
Safe-haven bids pushed the U.S. dollar to two-month highs against a basket of major currencies and German two-year government bond yields dropped below zero for the first time in two months.
World stocks fell and the dollar firmed yesterday as investors either moved to the sidelines or favored low-risk assets before Americans choose their president in elections today and while China starts a leadership transition and Greece faces a fraught vote to secure fresh rescue funds.
European shares were down 0.6% having ended the previous week at a two-week high. The MSCI world shares index was 0.5% lower as Tokyo's Nikkei index closed 0.5% weaker followed on from Friday's Wall Street sell-off.
Investors are nervous about whether the world's biggest economy will avert a shock as Washington contends with the year-end expiration of $600 billion in spending cuts and tax hikes - known as the "fiscal cliff" - after the presidential election.
"People are pausing ahead of the election and what that means for the fiscal cliff," said Jim Paulsen, chief investment officer at Wells Capital Management in Minneapolis.
Reuters contributed to this report.
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