In December 2016, the D&B Financial Strength Index for the Economy increased to 31.72 points, an uptick of 0.1% compared to the previous month. In an annual review, the index declined by 0.9%. In January 2017, the D&B Financial Strength Index continued its upward trend, and reached 31.8 points, an increase of 0.25% compared to December 2016. Business activity growth in the trade and services sectors continued from the fourth quarter of 2016 into January 2017, and positively affects business survivability. Part of the increase in the households’ private consumptions stems from an increase the extent of consumer credit they took. The longer we linger in a low interest rates environment, the more sensitive the market becomes to a trend of increasing interest rates.

The average number of payments in arrears days increased in 2016 to 29 (compared with an average of 27 days in 2015).

The trend of prolongation in the average collection period (credit days) continued in 2016, with a 2.5% increase of the average credit days to 122 days, compared to 119 days in 2015.

Trade and Services Companies Rankings 2017

As in every year, we rank Israel’s leading Trade and Services companies. At the top of the trade companies is Shufersal, the second place belongs to Paz and the third place to Eurocom Communication. The services companies ranking is led by Bezeq, followed by ZIM and with El-Al at the third place.

Among the sub-sectors of the trade companies ranking, the largest share of companies is in the Food and Beverages Wholesalers sector (14%), followed by Electrical Products Imports and Marketing (9%). From the services companies sectors, the highest share of companies is in the Travel Agencies and Tourism and the Transportation and Hauling Services sectors (13% each), followed by Security and Cleaning (12%).