Israel's Economy Represents 'Safest Investor Return' in Last Decade, Study Shows

Bloomberg report ranks Tel Aviv-25 index as having the highest return in the last 10 years, beating Hong Kong's Hang Seng in second place; Netanyahu: This is a great achievement.

Israel's financial market represents the safest return on investment among a group of 24 developed countries in the last decade, a study by finance network Bloomberg revealed on Monday, this despite what the study cites as the many threats the country faced during that time period.

According the "Bloomberg Riskless Return Ranking," Tel Aviv-25 index, culling Israel's top firms in terms of market worth, returned a 7.6 percent in the 10 years up until Sunday.

Tel Aviv Stock Exchange - Ofer Vaknin
Ofer Vaknin

By doing so, the Israeli index beat out the second "safest" return index, Hong Kong's Hang Seng, which saw a 6.7 percent return for the same period.

The Bloomberg study also referred to the constant political tension and threat of military action that Israel had to endure in the allotted time, such as the 2006 Second Lebanon war with Lebanese militant group Hezbollah, quoting former U.S. hedge fund executive Michael Steinhardt as saying that “Israel is an exciting place to invest.”

“The country is surrounded by enemies, it’s always on the edge of extinction, but it expands and prospers,” Steinhardt added.

The study also cited American finance guru Warren Buffet, who was quoted as saying in 2012: “If you’re going looking for brains, just stop at Israel. You don’t have to go anyplace else.”

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu responded to the Bloomberg data on Monday, calling the report "an immense achievement which originates from, among other things, the fact that we took Israel's economy out of a very concentrated place and opened it to competition."