Tel Aviv Stocks Defy Trump Slump Wednesday

Healthcare shares lift TASE against the trend as investors lose fear of regulatory crackdown by Clinton.

Uri Tomer
Uri Tomer
A digital ticker shows financial information outside the entrance to the Tel Aviv Stock Exchange, August 4, 2016.
A digital ticker shows financial information outside the entrance to the Tel Aviv Stock Exchange, August 4, 2016.Credit: Rina Castelnuovo, Bloomberg
Uri Tomer
Uri Tomer

Israeli stock indices are defying the global tumble in stocks following Donald Trump’s stunning upset victory, lifted by big drug companies. A rally in pharmaceutical shares is fueled by investor relief that Big Pharma will be spared the regulatory scrutiny promised by Hillary Clinton, and is lifting the market, albeit not by much.

In midday trading the TA-25 large-caps index had rebounded to a gain of 0.2% to 1,405 points. The broader TA-100 advanced 0.3% to 1,226.6.

The dollar was down against the shekel by a modest 0.25% to 3.8044.

Most TASE shares were down, as expected, but drug stocks are among the heaviest in weight in the indices, and led the most actively traded shares. Teva Pharmaceuticals was up 4.5% to 154.50 shekels ($40.72), Mylan rose 6.9% to 149.10 and Perrigo gained 5.1% to 323.90.

The gain made Israel a global outlier as the U.S. dollar sank and stocks plummeted amid market mayhem on Wednesday as investors faced up to a shock win for Republican nominee and political outsider Donald Trump, which many fear could upend the global political order.

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Asian stocks skidded, with MSCI's broadest index of Asia-Pacific stocks outside Japan down 2.5% and the Nikkei off a savage 5.4%. European shares fell at the open on Wednesday after Trump won the U.S. presidential election, bringing uncertainty which roiled global markets. The STOXX Europe 600 fell 1.1%, but well off earlier lows.

But safe havens, seen as outperforming in times of uncertainty, rose. Swiss stocks were up 0.7%.

Investors fear a Trump victory could cause global economic and trade turmoil and years of policy unpredictability, which among other things will discourage the Federal Reserve from raising interest rates in December as long expected.

“It’s a disappointment for anyone who expected a calm ending for the markets in 2016,” said Tel Aviv-based More Investment House. “Like Brexit, the markets again didn’t price a Donald Trump victory and the reaction will be strong. The uncertainty is expected to continue longer than what we saw after Brexit.”

More said the rally in healthcare stocks was global and reflected investor relief that drugmakers like Teva would not face tougher regulation on prices as the Democratic candidate, Hillary Clinton, had promised.

Reuters contributed to this report.



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