High-tech exports and private consumption are still pushing the economy forward. November 2014-January 2015 figures published today by the Central Bureau of Statistics show that exports of goods surged by an annualized 22.9%, following a 24.4% spurt in the three preceding months. The figures do not include exports of diamonds, ships, or airplanes. In contrast to the general rise in exports of goods, exports by traditional industries and exports of services and business services were much less positive.
The Bank of Israel this week unexpectedly lowered the interest rate to an all-time low of 0.1%, fearing that the strengthening of the shekel in recent weeks would harm exports.
The figures also indicate a continuation of the rising trend in private consumption, the main factor in the economy's growth in 2014. Total credit card purchases by private consumers were up by an annualized 3.4% in November 2014-January 2015, following a 7.8% gain in the three preceding months.
Industrial exports (industry, mining, and quarrying, but excluding diamonds, ships, and airplanes), rose by an annualized 24.9% in November 2014-January 2015, on the heels of a 24.3% increase in the preceding three months. A breakdown by type of technology categories shows that exports grew in most categories, other than industries with mixed traditional technology. The rise in exports was particularly outstanding in high tech (electronics, aircraft, and pharmaceuticals).
Exports of services (excluding startups) dipped 1.7% in November 2014-January 2015, following a 6.4% rise in the two preceding months. Exports of tourist services were up 2.1% in November 2014-January 2015, on the heels of an 11.8% jump in the two preceding months. Exports of business services (excluding startups) were down 2.8% in November 2014-January 2015, after climbing 5.1% in the two preceding months.
Published by Globes [online], Israel business news - www.globes-online.com - on February 26, 2015
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