The shekel is strengthening strongly this evening against the dollar and against the euro. In futures trading, the shekel exchange rate is down 1.07% against the dollar at NIS 3.545/$ and down 0.51% against the euro at NIS 3.482/€.
This afternoon, the Bank of Israel set the representative shekel-dollar rate up 1.129% today from Friday, at NIS 3.5830/$, and the representative shekel-euro rate was set 0.402% higher at NIS 3.4998/€. This is the weakest that shekel has been against the dollar since April 2020, at the start of the economic crisis caused by the Covid pandemic.
Bank of Israel again hikes rate by 0.75%
The shekel began strengthening this afternoon after the Bank of Israel announced a second successive 0.75% rate hike. A 0.5%-0.75% hike had been expected and Bank Hapoalim chief market strategist Modi Shafrir explains that other factors are dictating the direction of the shekel.
He said, “The forex market in Israel is mainly influenced in the long term by the substantial current account surplus and direct investments by foreign organizations in Israel, which support a strong shekel in the long term.
“In the short term, and specifically since the start of the year, the shekel has been influenced mainly by trends on world stock exchanges, with falls in the market leading to a weakening of the shekel, and vice versa. The interest rate gap does have an influence on the rate of the shekel but the influence is relatively marginal in our estimation. In addition, it is important to stress that the real interest rate gap between the US and Israel influences the shekel dollar exchange rate more than the nominal interest rate gap.”
Published by Globes, Israel business news – en.globes.co.il – on October 3, 2022.
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