Israel: Economic activity picks up in February
In February, the Bank of Israel’s (BoI) Composite State of the Economy Index rose 0.36% on a month-on-month basis, accelerating markedly from January’s downwardly-revised 0.23% increase (previously reported: +0.28% month-on-month) and marking the fastest pace of growth since November 2016.
Available external-sector data suggested that February’s pick-up was driven by a sharp rebound in monthly imports of consumer goods and manufacturing supplies. Exports of goods, however, dropped in February and slightly moderated the acceleration. Moreover, lagging data for January showed a strong recovery in the industrial sector and continued weakness in the services industry at the start of the year.
On an annual basis, growth in the index accelerated slightly to 3.5% in February from 3.4% in January.