Where Tel Aviv Meets New York / Schmoozing Business at TheMarker Conference

The headlines were filled with stories of adultery and fraud, but at the second TheMarker conference at the Plaza Hotel in New York City over the past two days the talk, in between the gossip, was also of the United States and Israeli economies.

The conference opened at the Plaza Wednesday, but yesterday the sessions were held at the New York Public Library on Fifth Avenue.

Over 800 senior American and Israeli leaders packed the overflowing hall at the Plaza, while the hotel's owner, Yitzhak Tshuva, proudly received his guests with a big smile and only one request: Come back next year.

Haaretz deputy publisher Guy Rolnik opened the conference, followed by high-tech entrepreneur Yossi Vardi.

The first two panels were on energy and the U.S. economy, followed by Regional Development Minister and Vice Prime Minister Silvan Shalom.

The lobby was filled with Israelis and Americans getting to know one another and mostly doing business, as well as many well-known faces, such as Cecilia Sarkozy, the ex-wife of the French president, who attended last year's conference too.