The Ticker: Bonuses to Banking, Insurance Corporate Board Chairpersons to Be Curbed

Consumer protection agency fines Rami Levy NIS 500m for not putting prices on goods; Nano Dimension shares rise on news of cooperation with Singapore research group.

Banks Supervisor David Zaken.Credit: Tomer Appelbaum

Bonuses to banking, insurance corporate board chairpersons to be curbed

Bonuses for the chairpersons of Israeli banks and insurance companies can no longer be performance-linked. That, according to a rare joint statement issued by the Bank of Israel’s banks supervisor, David Zaken, and the Finance Ministry’s insurance commissioner, Dorit Salinger. The move to fixed-only compensation is aimed at guaranteeing boards’ independence. Zaken and Salinger said regulations would be issued linking the compensation of board chairmen to that of outside board members, plus a supplement for the position of chairman. No additional indirect compensation, such as from a controlling shareholder, would be allowed. (Sivan Aizescu and Assa Sasson)

Consumer protection agency fines Rami Levy NIS 500m for not putting prices on goods

The Consumer Protection and Fair Trade Authority has imposed a fine of about 500,000 million shekels (about $130 million) on the Rami Levy supermarket chain, after finding the discount chain had violated the law requiring price stickers on items. The fine is subject to a hearing. Controlling shareholder Rami Levy said he would appeal the ruling. Levy took the authority to task for what he called the over-regulation of his business and said that many of the employees who price good are people with disabilities. Levy was speaking about price transparency before a session of the Knesset Economic Affairs Committee. The agency has issued combined fines of around 16 million shekels since the beginning of the year to supermarket chains for failure to put prices on items and disparities between prices on the items, or store shelves, and at the registers. (Ora Coren)

Nano Dimension shares rise on news of cooperation with Singapore research group

News of a cooperation agreement between Nano Dimension, the 3-D printer maker and a research institute in Singapore that specializes in 3-D technology, triggered a 3.6% rise in the Nes Tziona company’s share price yesterday. The agreement will have the company cooperating with the Singapore Center for 3D Printing on a 3-D printer that makes printed circuit board prototypes for the electronics industry. Around six months ago Nano Dimension reported the completion of a laboratory for manufacturing conductive inks and a 3.7 million shekel ($970,000) grant from the Chief Scientist’s Office for the project. (Dror Reich)

Holders of post office bonds get court order delaying transfer of assets to the government

Holders of bonds issued by Israel Postal Company, the government-owned firm that runs the postal service, have obtained an order from the Jerusalem District Court delaying the transfer of assets from the company to the state, saying that it could not be determined that the company is no longer insolvent. They obtained a professional opinion according to which Israel Post could return to a negative cash flow that would jeopardize repayments to bondholders. The judge asked the state to say whether the transfer of assets was a condition of the state’s agreement to an injection of government funds into Israel Post as part of a recovery program. (Omri Zerachovitz)

TASE shares head lower following declines in Europe, against backdrop of Greek crisis

Although trading on the Tel Aviv Stock Exchange opened in positive territory yesterday, the direction shifted following declines on European stock exchanges over uncertainty with regard to a resolution of the Greek debt crisis. The benchmark TA-25 index closed down 0.33%, at 1,686,02 points, while the broader TA-100 index slumped 0.48% to 1,448.27. Trading volume was nearly 1.59 billion shekels ($415 million). The Banks-5 index bucked the negative trend and rose 0.5%. Among shares of interest were two IDB group stocks, IDB Development Corporation and Discount Investment Corporation, which rose by 5.4% and 7 %, respectively. (See additional IDB coverage this page). (Dror Reich)