The trading week on the foreign exchange market opened this morning with the shekel weaker against the main currencies. At the start of the session, the shekel-dollar rate rose 0.15%, compared with Friday’s representative rate, to NIS 3.81/$, while the shekel-euro rate rose 0.3% to NIS 4.97/€. The question is whether this points to a change of trend, with the appreciation of the Israeli currency coming to an end, or a temporary correction.
On world markets, the US dollar is currently 0.15% weaker against the euro, but is strengthening against other major currencies.
The Bank of Jerusalem estimates that the shekel-dollar rate is close to the bottom, and that the shekel has exhausted its appreciation trend, with room perhaps for a further 1% fall in the rate against the US dollar. “The 3.77/78 threshold is a very strong support point, and we doubt whether it will be broken through under current conditions,” the bank says in its currency market review.
Among local factors likely to bring about a change in the shekel trend, according to the bank, are macro figures such as exports and unemployment, and a rise in the fiscal deficit because of Operation Pillar of Cloud. “We want to believe that the appreciation of the shekel is based on technical factors only and is short term. Similarly, we believe that healthy logic will return to dominate the markets, and then we will see the dollar strengthen substantially. We see the trading range for this week as between NIS 3.7750/$ and NIS 3.8470/$,” Bank of Jerusalem writes.