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Shekel at 3.7 to 3.8 Per Dollar is ‘Reasonable,’ Steinitz Says

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Jan. 25 (Bloomberg) -- A rate of 3.7 to 3.8 per dollar is a “reasonable level” for the Israeli shekel as Europe’s debt crisis persists and the outlook for the global economy worsens, said Finance Minister Yuval Steinitz.

The shekel’s 8.4 percent drop versus the greenback over the past six months is “very positive” for the Israeli economy as it makes exporters more competitive, Steinitz said in an interview in New York today. The nation’s central bank is no longer intervening in the market as the currency has reached an acceptable level, he said.

Israel’s shekel gained 0.4 percent to 3.7658 per dollar by 2:03 p.m. in New York, and is 1.4 percent stronger this year, data compiled by Bloomberg show.

Israel is “very happy” about the shekel’s decline and the level it is trading at, Steinitz said in a separate interview on Sept. 20, when the currency was at 3.6845 per dollar.

To contact the reporter on this story: Tal Barak Harif in New York at tbarak@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Emma O’Brien at eobrien6@bloomberg.net

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