March 13, 2008 / 2:42 PM / 11 years ago

Moody's says may upgrade Israel

LONDON, March 13 (Reuters) - Ratings agency Moody’s said on Thursday it was placing Israel’s A2 government bond ratings and A2 country ceiling on review for possible upgrade.

The ratings have carried a positive outlook since May 2006, Moody’s said in a statement.

“The review for upgrade reflects both the resilience of the Israeli economy in response to repeated economic and political shocks and the fiscal consolidation of the past several years,” the ratings agency said.

“Underlying the country’s rating is a history of financial and political support from the United States and the Jewish diaspora.”

Kristin Lindow, Moody’s lead sovereign analyst for Israel, said that Israel’s high per capita income, competitive high-tech and industrial sectors, and strong government effectiveness made it more like an advanced developed country than an emerging market.

However, Moody’s added: “Ongoing regional and domestic conflict continues to complicate policymaking, contributes to outsized budgetary defence expenditures and also is an obstacle to increased investment and stronger growth.”

Reporting by Carolyn Cohn; Editing by Ruth Pitchford

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