Israel Stocks: El Al Airlines, Partner, Cellcom, Hot, Bezeq

Israel’s TA-25 index advanced for a second day this week, gaining 0.6 percent to 1,050.92 at the 4:30 p.m. close in Tel Aviv. The gauge has declined 2.9 percent this week. Investors traded about 2.2 billion shekels ($571 million) of shares and convertible securities, according to bourse data, amid a TA-25 options expiry. Markets will be closed on May 27 for a holiday.

The following stocks rose or fell today. Symbols are in parentheses.

Bezeq Israeli Telecommunication Corp. (BEZQ IT) advanced 2.9 percent, the most since April 17, to 4.24 shekels. The country’s largest fixed-line operator said Chief Executive Officer Avi Gabbay boosted his holdings in the company by 206,315 shares to 1.77 million shares.

El Al Israel Airlines Ltd. (ELAL IT) advanced 5.9 percent, the biggest gain since Dec. 5, to 0.377 shekel. The country’s national carrier said the first-quarter loss narrowed to $23.4 million from $42.9 million.

Partner Communications Co. (PTNR IT), Israel’s second-largest mobile-phone provider, tumbled for an 11th day making it the longest losing streak since 2004. The shares dropped 5 percent to 17.20 shekels, the lowest level since April 2003.

“Shares are falling on continued investor concern about increased competition and on the background of the results published yesterday that underline the deterioration in profitability of these companies,” said Ori Licht, head of research at I.B.I.-Israel Brokerage & Investments Ltd. in Tel Aviv.

Cellcom Israel Ltd. (CEL IT), the country’s largest mobile phone provider, dropped for a third day, declining 1.9 percent to 28.80 shekels, the lowest level since July 2007, when the shares were listed in Tel Aviv. Hot Telecommunication System Ltd. (HOT IT), a fixed-line and mobile-phone operator, dropped 1.4 percent to 30 shekels.

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