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Israel’s Outlook Raised to Positive by Fitch on Deficit

Nov. 29 (Bloomberg) -- Israel credit outlook was raised to positive by Fitch Ratings, which cited a shrinking deficit as the country cuts debt and boosts taxes.

The company affirmed Israel’s A rating, the sixth-highest investment grade, in a statement today.

The extra yield investors demand to hold Israeli dollar debt due 2023 instead of similar-maturity Treasuries has fallen 43 basis points since they were sold in January, or 0.43 percentage point, to 90 basis points. The country’s budget deficit will fall to 3 percent of gross domestic product next year from 3.8 percent this year, according to the median estimate of analysts surveyed by Bloomberg.

“The new government has turned around the fiscal position and is committed to a credible medium-term program for further deficit reduction,” Fitch analysts led by Paul Gamble in London said in a report today.

The shekel strengthened for a fifth day, gaining 0.1 percent to 3.5228 per dollar at 2:48 p.m. in New York. Israel’s currency has increased 6 percent against the dollar this year, the most among 31 major currencies tracked by Bloomberg.

To contact the reporter on this story: Matthew Kanterman in New York at mkanterman2@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Tal Barak Harif at tbarak@bloomberg.net

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