Turkey Economic Troubles Take Tel Aviv Shares South

Business in Brief | Super-Sol net up 23% in quarter, plans to launch e-commerce site in November ■ Plus500 shares fall after it warns that it won’t repeat ‘exceptional’ first-half performance ■ Teva loses bid to block Israeli class-action suit in parallel with U.S. claim

FILE PHOTO: Turkish Lira banknotes are seen in this October 10, 2017 picture illustration.
\ MURAD SEZER/ REUTERS

Super-Sol net up 23% in quarter, plans to launch e-commerce site in November

Super-Sol said Monday that net profit climbed 23% from a year ago in the second quarter and added that it will launch in November a website enabling Israelis to shop for overseas products. Israel’s largest supermarket chain said net reached 85 million shekels ($23 million) as revenue climbed 4.8% to 3.1 billion shekels, mainly due to sales from the newly acquired New Pharm drugstore chain. Grocery sales edged up just 0.3% despite the addition of another 6,000 square meters, or 1.2%, of selling space. CEO Itzhak Aberkohen told TheMarker that the American Outlet e-commerce site debuting in November would sell apparel, electronics and other goods, including brands not now available in Israel. He said New Pharm will add eight to 12 stores a year to its existing 64, a pace of expansion that will saddle Super-Sol with losses on the division for longer than originally projected. Super-Sol shares ended up 1.7%% at 23.50 shekels. (Yoram Gabison and Hadar Kane)

Plus500 shares fall after it warns that it won’t repeat ‘exceptional’ first-half performance

Plus500 shares fell as much as 13% in London Monday after the company warned that its “exceptional performance” in the first half of the year was unlikely to be repeated. Plus500 reported a near-threefold jump in first-half core earnings as political events resulted in higher than expected market volatility. The Haifa-based company, which provides an online platform for retail customers to trade contracts for differences, raised its full-year financial performance expectations twice in the past two months, but a European Securities and Markets Authority ban on binary options sales to retail clients and restriction the sales of CFDs goes into effect this month. “It is unlikely that the exceptional performance of H1 2018 will be repeated and the impact of rule changes will potentially affect less than half of European Economic Area revenues (30% of group revenues) in the short term,” the company said. Plus500 shares ended down 15.3% at 1,701 pence ($21.69). (Reuters)

Teva loses bid to block Israeli class-action suit in parallel with U.S. claim

Teva Pharmaceutical Industries lost a court bid to block a class action filed against it in Israel, in parallel to a similar suit filed in the United States. However, Judge Ruth Ronen of the Tel Aviv District Court said she would freeze the Israeli suit until the U.S. proceedings were completed. Israeli and U.S. shareholders have sued Teva, whose shares are traded on Wall Street and in Tel Aviv, for issues related to the collapse of its share price during 2017. In asking Ronen to allow the Israeli suit to continue, lawyers said the two suits did not make identical claims, nor did they target the same Teva executives. Ronen, however, made her decision based on a third claim, namely that the Israeli plaintiffs could not necessary expect to be represented in the U.S. suit because under the so-called Morrison rule they didn’t meet all the criteria for joining the suit. (Gur Megiddo)

Israel plans law regulating broker-dealers for the first time

The Israel Securities Authority said Sunday it planned for the first time to regulate broker-dealers and released draft legislation that would give the powers to do so. The move comes after the collapse since May of three small brokerage houses — Short Trade, General Trade and Investech Global — leaving clients with losses in the millions of shekels. While Israel regulates portfolio managers, it has not to date imposed any supervision on broker-dealers. The proposed legislation would require brokers to be licensed and sets licensing conditions, including that the entity be incorporated and that staff meets certain standards for relevant skills. It also specifies minimum shareholder equity and certain governance standards. It will also set rules on conflicts of interest and on the disclosure of information to clients. “The proposed law will provide protection for the investing public that uses financial intermediaries and contribute to creating a fairer and more competitive market,” said ISA Chairwoman Anat Guetta. (Jasmin Gueta)

Turkey troubles take Tel Aviv shares south

Tel Aviv shares posted their fourth day of losses as concerns about Turkey caused a sell-off on global stock markets. The benchmark TA-35 index finished the day down by 0.44% at 1,580.37 points, but off its lows as Wall Street opened higher. The TA-125 shed 0.4% to 1,413.47 on turnover of 1.05 billion shekels ($283 million). Bank stocks were nearly all sharply low: Leumi lost 1.6% to 22.74 shekels, Discount 1.3% to 11.60 and Mizrahi Tefahot 1.4% to 64.20. U.S. drugmaker Perrigo marked its third straight big loss, falling 3.6% to 252.20. Electra Consumer fell 1.9% to 34.16 after reporting a second-quarter loss of 21.7 million shekels, reversing a year-earlier profit of 37.7 million. Volume leader Nice rose 0.9% to 417.50 after  Barclays raised its U.S. target price to $114. In foreign currency trading, the dollar gained on the shekel as it did elsewhere globally, strengthening 0.4% to 3.7090. The euro lost nearly 0.3% to 4.2246 shekels. (Guy Erez)