• Israeli stocks, as defined by the BlueStar® Israel Global Index (BIGI®), rose 7.06% in the fourth quarter of 2023, underperforming US and international developed market equities for the fourth straight quarter.
  • Israeli technology stocks, as defined by the BlueStar® Israel Global Technology Index (BIGITech®), gained 12.33% Q4, widening their year-to-date underperformance against US and Global tech peers by more than 54%.
  • Israel launched Operations Iron Swords following a Hamas led offensive against Israel on October 7th, 2023.  The Israeli army initiated a ground invasion on October 27th in an effort to eradicate the terrorist-designated group.
  • The controversial Judicial reform legislation off the agenda and blocked by Israel’s Supreme Court. removing a major negative for Israel’s markets.  The next political drama will be the inquiries and fallout related to Hamas October 7th attack, and the likelhood that PM Netanyahu’s coalition will founder, resulting in new elections perhaps even later this year.
  • With the IDF seemingly in control of the situation in Gaza, history would suggest that 2023’s massive underperformance is setting up for a recovery in 2024. Risks still abound, however, as intensifying skirmishes with Hezbollah across Israel’s northern border with Lebanon have the potential to explode into another war front.  
  • Israel's economy continues to show impressive resilience. The Bank of Israel made its first cut since 2020, providing a sense of relief in pressured industries, notably real estate. This sector experienced a significant growth of 21.83% in the final quarter of 2023
  • MarketVector launched an innovative new Israel fixed income index, the MCM-BlueStar® Israel Bonds Index, the first index to provide investors exposure to Israel government and corporate bonds that are denominated both in USD and ILS. The BlueStar® Israel Bond Index is tracked by a US-listed ETF since mid-December.

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