Market Report

Positive Trading in Europe Lifts the TASE

Analysts believe that Europe's eight-week high has more steam than the short-lived high in April and May.

The Tel Aviv Stock Exchange finished Wednesday's trading session with gains, after stable trading for most of the day was carried upward on positive growth outlooks for Europe and the United States.

The TA-25 Index of blue-chip shares gained 0.3% on Wednesday to close at 1,234 points, while the broader TA-100 Index closed up 0.4% at 1,117 points. Biomed shares closed virtually unchanged, while the Real Estate-15 index gained 0.1%. Oil and gas shares gained 0.6%.

Total turnover was NIS 823 million, which was low compared to recent averages.

In Europe, shares climbed to an eight-week closing high on Wednesday, led by stocks that generally perform better during an economic recovery. Robust euro zone surveys and some strong company results boosted sentiment.

Europe's latest 10% rally since a seven-month low just a month ago appeared to have more steam then the rise in April and May, which saw the FTSEurofirst 300 index gain 10% before falling 12% in the following weeks, analysts and fund managers said.

In Asia, Japan's Nikkei share average edged down on Wednesday, snapping a two-day rally, as investors took profits in recent gainers. Hong Kong shares eked out a fourth day of gains in weak trade, buoyed by a firmer European open and as larger Chinese lenders reversed early losses.

Notable local shares included oil and gas exploration company Givot Olam, which lost 2.3% on high turnover. The company is planning to raise $20 million to $25 million through a rights placement, and is also looking to approve a NIS 150,000-a-month salary for its CEO, not including bonuses.

Other notable shares included Clal Insurance and IDB Holding. It emerged Wednesday that IDB was negotiating with a Chinese buyer to sell it 30% of its holding in Clal at a valuation of NIS 4.6 billion. IDB Holding gained 2.7%, while Clal gained 0.7%.

Direct Insurance gained 6% on the news that the Shnidman family, which controls the company, is advancing plans for an IPO for subsidiary I.D.I. Insurance.

Meanwhile, attempts by Delek Israel to sell its holding in Pi Glilot were vetoed by the Finance Ministry, which is the company's controlling shareholder (55%). Delek Israel lost 0.4%, while parent company Delek Group gained 0.8%.

Other prominent shares included EZChip, which gained 5.2%, clothing and homeware brand Golf, which gained 5%, Melisron, which gained 4%, and TowerJazz, which lost 5.2%.

With reporting by Reuters.

Reuters