Menu JTA Search

U.S. Life Insurance Companies to Finance Immigrant Housing in Israel

SIGN UP FOR THE JTA DAILY BRIEFING

Four major American Life Insurance Companies have signed an agreement with the Jewish Agency for Israel, Inc., which will facilitate the construction of homes for over 8,000 immigrants expected to arrive in Israel in 1963, it was reported here today. The four participating companies are: The Penn Mutual Life Insurance Co. of Philadelphia, The Massachusetts Mutual Life Insurance Co. of Springfield, Mass., The State Mutual Life Assurance Co. of America, Worcester, Mass., and the Phoenix Mutual Life Insurance Co. of Hartford, Conn.

On the strength of this agreement, United Associates, Inc., –a new corporation formed by Jack D. Weiler and Benjamin H. Swig, two leading New York and San Francisco realtors–will finance the construction of over 2,000 immigrant housing units throughout Israel ranging from Safad in the North to Ashdot in the South. United Associates will invest $10,000,000 in the financing of these units, including $1,000,000 of its own capital, $4,500,000 in proceeds of 15-year notes at six and one-half percent interest subscribed by the four insurance companies, and $4,500,000 million in subordinated capital participation subscribed to by Chail, the Israel Economic Development Corporation.

The financing, construction and distribution of the units to be built by United Associates follows a pattern established last year by American Associates, The Massachusetts Life Insurance Co., and The New England Life Insurance Co., which made it possible for the first time for American Insurance firms to provide loans for Israel’s extensive immigrant housing program through American based Corporations.

The Massachusetts Mutual Life Insurance Co. as lenders as well as Jack D. Weiler and Benjamin H. Swig as investors are ‘repeaters’ having participated in the American Associates as well as the United Associates transactions. Negotiations for the formation of both companies were conducted by Gottlieb Hammer, executive vice-chairman of the Jewish Agency for Israel, Inc., and Maurice M. Boukstein, the Agency’s attorney and counsel.

WEILER LAUDS INSURANCE COMPANIES FOR THEIR INVESTMENTS TO AID NEWCOMERS

The units to be financed by United Associates will be purchased from the Israel Housing Authority and leased to the Jewish Agency for Israel, Inc., a philanthropic organization which is the major beneficiary of the nationwide United Jewish Appeal. The Agency, which will distribute the units to new immigrants as part of its over-all immigrant rehabilitation program in Israel, will pay a fixed annual rental to United Associates to cover repayment of the initial investment and interest charges. This fixed annual rental to be covered out of the Agency’s share in the United Jewish Appeal will serve to guarantee the loans received by United Associates.

Mr. Weiler expressed his appreciation for the cooperation of the insurance companies. “I know they have entered into this agreement with us as hard-headed businessmen, but I think that they will also derive satisfaction from the fact that their investments will help to put a roof over people who have come a long way to find a new life of freedom and dignity in a young, dynamic country,” he said.

NEXT STORY