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Finance Ministry

  • With friends like these: How Netanyahu walked all over his closest ally

    Netanyahu's crushing victory wasn't so much over the Left, which never stood much of a chance to begin with. His true and ruthless triumph was over the Right, and especially over one man — his closest ally, Naftali Bennett.  It is difficult to describe Netanyahu’s victory in Tuesday’s elections as anything other than stunning. Stunning not so much for the fact that he had won — this much was reluctantly accepted among most observers throughout the election season. The true shock came as the sheer scope of Netanyahu’s victory was revealed - 30 seats to Herzog’s 24, dramatically strengthening the…

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  • Going rogue: How the Ministry of Finance plays by its own rules

    When it comes to getting its way, the Finance Ministry will go to no end to force other governmental bodies to bend to its will.  By Hagai Kalai Like public authorities in Israel, the Ministry of Finance aims to promote public interest to the best of its understanding. However, like all public authorities, the ministry suffers from a narrow perspective: it gives higher value to its own policies, while undervaluing the importance of proper administrative process. Yet, while most public authorities try and promote their agenda through the standard legitimate government mechanisms, the Ministry of Finance has developed a long…

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  • Israel's economy has problems, but a bubble ain't one

    The concern sparked by claims of an economic bubble in Israel are not supported by data, and could lead to a harmful consequences if interest rates rise and exchange rates are adversely affected. A response to Jesse Colombo in Forbes. In an article recently published on Forbes.com, Jesse Colombo argues that "Israel’s economic boom is not the miracle that it appears to be, but is actually another bubble that is similar to those that caused the financial crisis." The article has been widely cited, both in Israel and abroad. Worrying about an economic bubble neatly dovetails with Israelis' characteristic eschatological…

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  • OECD catches Israeli Finance Minister Lapid in apparent lie

    Finance Minister Yair Lapid raises taxes on alcohol, then claims it was because of a binding agreement with the OECD. Problem is, the OECD has no clue what he's talking about. After only a few months in office, local news and social media arenas seem to be catching Finance Minister Yair Lapid with a new faux pas almost daily. Be it wrong economic figures, misunderstandings, misquotes or others - Lapid just can't seem to keep up the appearance of someone who actually knows what he's doing. But if until now his unfortunate mishaps were limited to the scrutiny of domestic critics, today…

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