Israeli economy on the move upwards

It’s official. The Israeli economy is doing well.

Gross domestic product rose 4.7% on an annual basis in the second quarter, faster than the first three months’ growth rate of 3.6%. It was the fastest growth in more than two years. In the first six months of the year, the economy expanded 4.1%.

That is excellent by any standards, especially at a time when Europe was hit by the “Greek crisis”. Exports have continued to rise at over 15%. The heavily reliable “purchasing manager’s index” is also moving in the right direction.

It was only last week that the Finance Minister released a series of other stats, mainly painting a very healthy picture.

Evaluations based on initial data from various sectors of the economy suggest unemployment rates will decrease to 6%, reduced from the 7% forecast at the beginning of the year. Poverty rates are also expected to decline significantly for the first time in years.

 One figure of particular importance for me and which has received little coverage is the anticipated fiscal debt. In the UK, the coalition government is striking at several “holy cows” in order to control the excessive spending. In Israel, the figure will reach around 4%, and not 8% as originally feared by many.

The rate of interestlooks to remain unchanged for the short term at least. The shekel has ceased (temporarily?) to gain in value against the main trading currencies. So all-in-all, a good mid-term report.

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