Business in Brief

Central bank to keep Israel's interest rate at 1%

Israel's interest rate will remain unchanged at 1% in November, the Bank of Israel decided on Monday. The announcement was in line with market expectations. According to a survey conducted by the Psagot Investment House, 88% of 450 bank investment advisors polled believed that the central bank and its new governor, Karnit Flug, would not change the interest rate. A month before, the central bank's monetary committee cut interest rates by 0.25 percentage points to 1%. (Dror Reich)

Team calls for rental homes with 5-year contracts

The team appointed by the government to formulate principles for building more rental housing submitted its final recommendations on Monday. The recommendations call for building new housing primarily in open areas zoned for construction after receiving an approval from a special planning committee. Finance Minister Yair Lapid received the team's recommendations on Monday. The tenders for the construction will be prepared by an interministerial committee led by Finance Ministry Accountant General Michal Abadi-Boiangiu and will ensure that each project has a minimal return for developers. The committee also recommended that the state sign renters to five-year leases with an option to extend the contract by another five years. (Nimrod Bousso)

Likud MK to treasury: You are hooligans who couldn't sell sandwiches

Knesset Labor, Welfare and Health Committee chairman MK Haim Katz (Likud) directed some choice epithets at Finance Ministry officials during a hearing on career soldiers' salaries on Monday. "You are behaving like hooligans," he said to the treasury officials at the hearing. "The country is not managed in universities and not by books. I promise you that all these people don't know how to manage a kiosk. They wouldn't even know how to sell sandwiches." Knesset members were debating a new salary agreement that would increase career soldiers' retirement age. (Zvi Zrahiya)

Reuters