The Ticker: Good News/bad News for El Al

Perrigo in rude health after net profit soars 58% in fourth quarter, the dollar takes a pounding against the shekel.

El Al via Bloomberg

El Al's Q2 profits soar, war damage grounds optimism

El Al Airlines reported a big increase in second-quarter profit on Thursday, but warned that the damage from the Gaza war in the current quarter would be bigger than it had earlier predicted. The airline said second-quarter profit jumped more than fourfold to $16.3 million from a year earlier, as revenue climbed 7.9% to $572 million. El Al said it earned less per passenger/kilometers, apparently due to the launch of its new low-cost brand Up, but it flew 9.2% more passengers in the three months than it did the same time in 2013. However, the airline said it expected revenue would be somewhere between $55 million and $65 million less in the current quarter, a much bigger estimate than the $40 million to $50 million it had earlier estimated. El Al shares closed 1.6% higher at 51 agorot (15 cents) in Tel Aviv.

Perrigo shares jump on strong fourth quarter, 2015 outlook

Shares of Perrigo soared on Thursday after it reported a sharp rise in profit and double-digit increases in the new fiscal year. The maker of generic over-the-counter drugs said net profit, not counting one-time items, rose 58% in its fiscal fourth quarter to $234 million. It said net sales increased 18% year-on-year to a record $1.14 billion. For fiscal 2015, Perrigo forecast adjusted earnings in the range of $7.20 to $7.50 a diluted share, an increase of 13% to 17% over fiscal 2014 and reported earnings of between $4.05 and $4.35 a diluted share. We expect to launch greater than $235 million in new products, including multiple products that have recently switched from prescription to OTC status, said CEO Joseph C. Papa. Perrigo closed up 5.4% at 508 shekels ($146.39) in Tel Aviv, making it the top gainer among TA-100 stocks for the day.

Tel Aviv ends higher on truce extension

Tel Aviv shares rose on Thursday as Israel and the Palestinians agreed to extend their cease-fire another five days and Wall Street started the day higher. The benchmark TA-25 index finished the session up 0.2% at 1,389.35 points, while the TA-100 climbed 0.3% to 1,239.45 as 1.07 billion shekels ($308 million) in shares changed hands. Among gainers, Bank Leumi rose 1.5% to 13.80 shekels, while the two IDB holding companies, IDB Development Corporation and Discount Investment Corporation, advanced 2.9% and 1.9%, to 4.66 and 29.60, respectively. Protalix led the decliners on the TA-100, ending down 6.4% at 9.02 shekels after Bio-Cell said it was selling 4.4 million shares to institutional investors for 8.61 shekels each. The dollar took a big loss, weakening 0.66% to a Bank of Israel rate of 3.47 shekels. The euro was down almost as much, losing 0.54% to 4.6422.