When a rise in interest rates is good news

Usually, when a central bank raises interest rates, the sectorial lobbyists press their automatic convulsion button; trades unions, manufacturers, small business groups, and anti-government newspapers.

True the world over, and definitely true in Israel. Just look at the Hebrew press to judge the reactions to the Bank of Israel’s surprise announcement yesterday to raise the inter bank rate by 0.25% to 1.00%.  

In fact, the change is a sign of praise for the economy and those running it. It shows that the country is becoming more worried about possible inflation and public sector deficits rather than the recession. In other words, Israel’s economy is growing.

There is much statistical and anecdotal evidence for this – eg, surveys of the labour market. One strong indication is what has been happening on the Tel Aviv Stock Exchange (TASE). A 9 month survey to 30.9.09 shows how shares are shaking off volatility and recording deep gains.

To quote from part of the report:

In August TASE saw its first equity IPO in eighteen months. Foreign financial investors injected $0.9 billion to TASE.
Prices of corporate bonds, which had declined in the closing four months of 2008, staged a comeback as well during the period under review. In the corporate bond market mainly banks and a number of large companies raised capital in public offerings and private placements to institutional investors.

TA-25 and International indices – 1-9/2009
In USD terms

The TASE has been expecting higher interest rates for some time. The fact that they have not appeared for 3 months will not arrest a further rise in prices for the near future at least. Let us hope that the investors are showing their confidence in the economy and not just fuelling another market sell out.

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2 Comments on “When a rise in interest rates is good news”

  1. Michael Horesh Says:

    Israel Raises Key Rate to 1% Amid Economic Rebound – this article from the Wall Street Journal continues the theme mentioned above: http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052748704779704574553673982286470.html

  2. […] post: When a rise in interest rates is good news « Afternoon Tea In … By admin | category: afternoon tea | tags: back-lit-pink, commercial-life, hotel-entrance, […]

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