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Group of Wall Street Banking Firms Underwrites Bank Leumi Shares

The impressive scope of American financial and industrial participation in Israel’s economy was highlighted at a luncheon of the American Israel Chamber of Commerce & Industry held here today at the Sheraton-Atlantic Hotel. The meeting marked the successful underwriting of Bank Leumi Le-Israel shares by a group of Wall Street firms headed by Kuhn, Loeb & Co. Inc.

Nathaniel Samuels, senior partner of Kuhn, Loeb & Co., told the meeting that the five leading Wall Street firms which formed the underwriting group have felt that “Israel’s economy has matured to the point where a firmly underwritten capital market transaction would help to establish in the minds of American and European investors a new pattern for the financing of Israeli enterprises,” No better choice than the Bank Leumi issue could be asked for, he said, since the Bank is Israel’s leading financial institution and had established for itself worldwide repute.

Significant developments in the industrial field were outlined to the more than 130 leaders of finance, industry and commerce present by Abraham R. Taiber, director of the Israel Government Investment Authority for North America. He disclosed that the leading American manufacturer of presses, the E. W. Bliss Manufacturing Company, signed an agreement to establish a steel presses plant in Israel, at an investment of $1,000,000. This development, he said, is augmented by the plans of the Meehanite Corporation of St. Louis-with American and Israeli capital–to erect in Israel a grey iron foundry, specializing in machine castings.

No less important developments, Mr. Taiber said, are taking place in the chemical field, where such corporations as Chemstrand and Monsanto are sharing the list with other leading American concerns in developing Israel’s chemical, plastics and rubber industries. He also predicted soon-to-be announced developments in the electronics industry.

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