Tel Aviv Shares Advance as Dow Jones Hits 20,000 for the First Time

Business in Brief | Teva faces more legal headaches from its Allergan acquisition; IBI investment house executive resigns in wake of trading room fistfight.

A screen displays the Dow Jones Industrial Average surpassing the 20,000 mark following the closing bell on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) in New York, January 25, 2017.
BRENDAN MCDERMID/REUTERS

Teva faces more legal headaches from its Allergan acquisition

Teva Pharmaceuticals’ acquisition of Allergan Generics last year is promising more headaches. This week Endo International reached a preliminary settlement with U.S. antitrust regulators under which it will no longer pay rivals to delay the launch of generic competitors to its drugs. Two generics makers are also named in the lawsuit, which alleges they illegally blocked access to low-cost alternatives to Endo’s products. One is Watson Laboratories, which Teva acquired when it bought Allergan. The complaint against Watson and Impax Laboratories remains outstanding. Although the suit deals with events that occurred long before Teva bought Allergan, the terms of its agreements makes the Israeli drug maker liable for any past lawsuits. The suit is a second involving Allergan in three months, after the U.S. Justice Department named it among 12 generics makers it alleges colluded on prices. Shares of Teva closed 1.5% higher at 124.30 shekels ($32.78) on Wednesday. (Yoram Gabison)

IBI investment house executive resigns in wake of trading room fistfight

A week after he and his deputy were suspended after a fistfight in the investment house’s trading room floor, IBI Investment House said Wednesday that trading room manager Ofer Lev had decided to step down. Witnesses said an argument over fees with Asaf Mashiach escalated into a physical altercation and to both men’s suspension while the incident was investigated. Lev’s departure could be a blow to IBI, which manages 40 billion shekels ($10.6 billion) in assets. Lev, who joined the firm in 2005, holding the title of vice president of trade, was largely responsible for building up IBI into one of the biggest players in the capital market. He received 37 million shekels in compensation over the last six years. “His impact on operations and [the capital market] and on the firm’s results is immense,” IBI itself said in a recent financial report. There was no word of whether Mashiach would also be stepping down. (Assa Sasson and Eran Azran)

Tel Aviv shares advance as Dow Jones hits 20,000 for the first time

Tel Aviv shares closed higher Wednesday as the Dow Jones Industrial Average traded above 20,000 for the first time ever. The Tel Aviv Stock Exchange’s blue-chip TA-25 index ended 0.5% up at 1,421.19 points, while the TA-100 added more than 0.7% to 1,248.08, on turnover of 1.49 billion shekels ($390 million). Israel Chemicals climbed 2.5% to 18.13 shekels after Cowen & Company raised its target prices and ratings for a group of fertilizer makers. Phoenix led insurance stocks higher, gaining 2.5% to 12.91. Kenon Holdings added 1.65% to finish at 48.81 after Bank Leumi sold a 4.6% stake in the company for 112.5 million shekels.The sale, at  45 shekels a share, was to controlling shareholder Idan Ofer. Jerusalem Economy Corporation gained 1.9% to 8.14 after the receivers holding Eliezer Fishman’s stock in the company sold 44 million shares to institutional investors and to David Fuhrer, JEC’s largest shareholder. Barack Capital fell 2.9% to 322.50 in heavy trading. (Guy Erez)