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Foreign Currency Reserves Surge

Israel’s foreign currency reserves grew by $566 million last months to a record $9.51 billion, the Bank of Israel said.

The increase was attributed to the continuing purchase of Israeli shekels in recent months, which resulted from high domestic interest rates enacted by the central bank as part of its policy to suppress inflation.

Inflation was 14.5 percent in 1994, but has sunk to less than 1 percent in the first three months of this year. However, the lending rate, currently at an annual 14 percent, has been kept high.