Leading indexes in Tel Aviv are sustaining gains of about 1% in early afternoon trade. Total turnover is moderate at NIS 226 million, after a morning spurt of action.
The Maof-25 index is rising 1.17% to 471.24 points, while the TA-100 index is gaining 0.92% to 461.61 points. The Tel-Tech index is jumping by 2.16%, after technology stocks lost more than 7% on Tuesday.
Central Securities Corporation mutual funds manager Shay Barak believes today's gains are being fueled by speculators on Maof-25 options, due to expire on Thursday. The speculators are trying to manipulate the index, Barak says, by trading in underlying assets.
In addition, Barak believes the market may be going through a mild correction after the steep drops this month. He predicts the correction may be sustained in the coming days.
The Maof-25 index is still in the green even though Teva Pharmaceuticals (Nasdaq:TEVA), which comprises 10% of the Maof-25's weight, has been in the red all day. The big banks began the session with gains but are now slipping on moderate turnover. Bank Hapoalim is down 0.3% on the session's highest turnover, NIS 37 million. Bank Leumi is slipping 0.1% on a volume of NIS 22 million despite positive recommendations for both from Nessuah Zannex. Foreign investors have reportedly been selling bank stocks for days.
Dual-listed stocks are heading north. Nice Systems (Nasdaq:NICE) is up 1.5% on NIS 3.9 million turnover and Formula Systems (Nasdaq:FORTY) is gaining 3% on NIS 5 million turnover. Elron Electronic Industries (Nasdaq:ELRNF) is rising 1.7% on NIS 3.1 million turnover and Teva Pharmaceuticals (Nasdaq:TEVA), in contrast, is dipping 0.7% on NIS 1 million.
Israel Chemicals' stock is shedding 3.5% on NIS 8 million. Yesterday ICL stock plunged 5.9% after the press wrote that the company's third-quarter earnings have seriously eroded due to the rising prices of raw materials, frozen product prices and the pesky weak euro. The bulk of Israel Chemicals' revenues are in euros. Also, Ma'ariv reported, the company will probably choose to delay its flotation abroad because of its own weak condition and the sorry condition of the whole chemicals sector. ICL denied yesterday that it's about to issue a profit warning.
E&M Computers is plunging 2% on NIS 1.2 million. Last week the company announced that Sun Microsystems (Nasdaq:SUNW)) will be delaying consignments to it, following a slip-up when the company delivered a computer to a client before obtaining the proper authorizations. Since the announcement, E&M Computers' stock fell over 20%.
The rises in the oil sector are calming down, with Isramco's participating unit, which lost 40% since the beginning of the month, shining with a 4.3% rise on NIS 4 million turnover. Avner's participating unit is up 1.9% and Delek Dilling is up 0.7%.