The Tel Aviv Stock Exchange finished Wednesday's trading session with light gains, taking the lead from exchanges overseas.
The blue-chip Tel Aviv-25 Index gained 0.2% to close at 1,200 points, while the broader Tel Aviv-100 Index gained 0.25% to close at 1,098 points. The Banks-5 stood out with a 1.6% gain, led upward by Discount Bank, which gained 2%. The Real Estate-15 gained 0.2%.
Turnover totaled NIS 1.1 billion, which is above last month’s average.
In Europe, a key equity index – Euro STOXX 50 - scaled fresh two-year highs on Wednesday, lifted by a rebound in beaten-down utility stocks and a surge in chip designer ARM.
Traders said increasing signs that Europe’s economy is recovering from the sovereign debt crisis would enable equities to maintain a longer-term upwards trend, even if markets wobble in September on the prospect of a gradual end to U.S. stimulus.
In Asia, Japan’s Nikkei average ended little changed after hitting a seven-week high. Hong Kong shares snapped a four-day winning streak on Wednesday, closing down 0.2%.
Back in Israel, Kitov Pharmaceuticals gained 11% Wednesday, a day after its 55% gain after announcing testing for its flagship blood pressure medication had advanced.
Brainsway gained 3.9% after announcing it signed a distribution deal for the Japanese market with Century Medical that includes exclusive distribution rights for the company’s Deep TMS device for treating depression.
Pluristem announced that it had received U.S. patent approval for a crucial patent, giving the company exclusivity for its stem cell therapy for peripheral artery disease. Its shares gained 5.1%.
Carasso Motors announced that its board of directors approved a NIS 25 million dividend, or NIS 0.37 per share. The company’s share price dropped 0.85%.
Other notable shares included Elco Holdings, which gained 3.7%; Kamada, up 3.6%; Africa Assets Properties, up 3%; Property & Building Corp., up 2.45%. Discount Investments’ share was up 2.5%, putting it up 100% since the start of the year.
With reporting by Reuters.