Dollar rises to NIS 3.786 as local companies buy up greenbacks
The dollar rose strongly against the shekel yesterday, up 0.5% to a representative rate of NIS 3.786. But the euro moved in the opposite direction, reflecting its moves in global forex markets, and fell 0.35% against the shekel to a representative rate of NIS 4.977.
The euro fell for a third straight session against the dollar and was down 0.6% against the greenback.
The euro's fall also came off its lows after speculation the European Central Bank could provide euro-zone banks with more liquidity in another long-term refinancing operation. Weaker euro-zone economic data released yesterday, not just for indebted smaller regional economies but in core nations too, raised speculation over possible policy signals at today's ECB monetary policy meeting.
But local forex traders said the dollar's strengthening against the shekel was not only due to the euro's fall: "The strengthening of the dollar in recent days is the result of specific large Israeli business groups buying up large supplies of dollars," said Miryam Szeinblum, the head of the forex trading room at the Prico Group. But the overall trend shows the dollar weakening against the shekel over the long run as Israel's macroeconomic numbers are better than other nations in its category, she added.
"In the short run it is still possible to see the dollar strengthening against the shekel, in light of expectations that the euro will weaken against the dollar as a result of the French elections," said Szeinblum.
As to the euro-dollar trade, she said global forex traders were sitting on the fence and waiting for the French elections, and a victory for the Socialist candidate Francois Hollande would rock the German-French relationship and lead to a quick and sharp fall in the euro.