Tue: Tech stocks pull market down

Mellanox, NICE, and EZchip fell hard today, but oil and gas exploration companies and the banks gained ground.

The Tel Aviv Stock Exchange (TASE) fell today. The Tel Aviv 25 Index fell 1.52% to 1,207.55 points, the Tel Aviv 100 Index fell 1.65% to 1,069.24 points, and the BlueTech 50 Index fell 2.20% to 339.82 points. Turnover was NIS 1.32 billion.

After a long weekend, the TASE fell across the board today, except for the Oil and Gas Index, in line with losses on most European markets and at the opening on Wall Street.

In the bond market, long-term Shahar unlinked government shekel bonds fell by up to 0.4 and long-term Galil CPI-linked government bonds fell by up 0.2%. The corporate bond benchmark index Tel-Bond 20 Index fell 0.33%.

In the foreign currency market, the Bank of Israel set the shekel-dollar representative exchange rate at NIS 3.862/$, up 0.16% on Friday's rate, and set the shekel-euro representative exchange rate at NIS 4.998/€, down 0.35%.

In the stock market, dual-listed technology shares pulled the market down on negative arbitrage gaps, led by a 5% drop by Mellanox Technologies Ltd. (Nasdaq:MLNX; TASE:MLNX), 4.2% drop by NICE Systems Ltd. (Nasdaq: NICE; TASE: NICE), and 1.5% drop by EZchip Semiconductor Ltd. (Nasdaq: EZCH; TASE:EZCH).

Israel Chemicals Ltd. (TASE: ICL) fell 4.4% on the day's biggest turnover of NIS 151.5 million, partly after Clal Finance downgraded its recommendation for the share. Its parent company, Israel Corporation (TASE: ILCO), fell 3.1%.

Israel Discount Bank (TASE: DSCT) rose 3% for the biggest gain among Tel Aviv 25 shares, while Mizrahi Tefahot Bank (TASE:MZTF) rose 1.4% and Bank Hapoalim (TASE: POLI) rose 0.9%.

Oil and gas exploration companies also bucked the market, with Tamar and Leviathan partners Avner Oil and Gas LP (TASE: AVNR.L) and Delek Drilling LP (TASE: DEDR.L) up 1.8% and 2.7%, respectively, although their parent company Delek Group Ltd. (TASE: DLEKG) fell 3.8%.

Published by Globes [online], Israel business news - www.globes-online.com - on October 9, 2012

© Copyright of Globes Publisher Itonut (1983) Ltd. 2012

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