March 10, 2019
Bottom line: The surplus in Israel’s current account for October-December 2018 jumped to $4.19bn, one of the highest-ever quarterly surpluses. But don’t get carried away by this good news. The rise was overwhelmingly due to a massive $1.14bn surplus on primary income (see definition below) – by far the largest-ever surplus on this component, which usually posts a deficit. It is doubtful if this can be repeated and it may even be revised down in the future. Other than that, the picture was mixed, but the $500m decline in the surplus on trade in services is a negative, especially for the fourth quarter when this surplus usually posts a strong rise.
March 10, 2019
February 26, 2019
There is a plethora of topics to write about — more than has been the case in quite a few years. The most obvious and seemingly urgent is the political arena and the election campaign underway. In that area, however, I am primarily using verbal communication channels — conference calls and individual conversations — if only because the pace of events is so rapid that written analysis suffers from almost instant obsolescence.
Recorded on: February 5th, 2019. Podcast recording starts at 3:30 min.» Read more
The emergence of Benny Gantz as Netanyahu’s main rival highlights the gulf between Israel and the (crumbling) democracies of the West» Read more
Recorded on: January 17th, 2019.» Read more
January 10, 2019
In a matter of weeks, Israeli politics has swung from somnolent to frenetic. It now requires considerable effort just to keep up with the daily news of who is doing what — forming new parties, leaving old ones, creating or destroying alliances. Yet the polls — which no-one believes, yet everyone reads and quotes — have remained consistent regarding the most important aspect of the campaign, namely the winner: they say that Netanyahu is on course for another victory, which will enable him to choose his partners in the next government.