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Yossi Beinart, CEO of Tel Aviv Stock Exchange. Photo credit: Bloomberg Video via YouTube[/caption] Israel’s dedication to developing its defence capabilities has been extended to cyberspace in recent years, leading to a proliferation of new technology companies. The TASE currently has a TA-BlueTech index with a market value of $23 billion that includes 59 tech firms traded in Tel Aviv, although some are also listed abroad. The bourse — which is in the process of demutualising — has suffered shrinking trading volumes and a dearth of new listings as many companies, particularly technology firms, prefer to be acquired or go public on Nasdaq. Among those in the new index are software firms Amdocs , Check Point Software Technologies, Nice Systems, auto safety company Mobileye <MBLY.N, website platform Wix.com, chipmaker TowerJazz, and Cyber-Ark Software. [caption id="attachment_5785" align="aligncenter" width="440"]Tel Aviv Stock Exchange interior architecture Tel Aviv Stock Exchange interior[/caption] Some 41 companies in the index currently trade on Nasdaq, six on the New York Stock Exchange and seven in London. The bourse said the index could serve as the underlying benchmark for index funds, exchange traded funds (ETFs) and exchange traded notes (ETNs) issued in Israel and abroad. “We estimate that the index and ETNs that will track the index will assist the growth of Israeli high-tech companies, as well as the exposure of TASE and the companies traded on TASE to investors overseas, thereby contributing to the entire market,” Beinart said. Trading volume of stocks in Tel Aviv rose 3 percent in 2014 but was only about half the 2010 average, while the number of listed companies fell to 473 from 654 in 2007. Last month, Beinart told Reuters the exchange would change rules and offer incentives to medium-sized companies to choose initial public offerings over mergers and acquisitions. On Sunday, the TASE’s broad TA-100 index hit an all-time high of 1,434.50 points. It has since eased to 1,412.39. – Reuters (Reporting by Steven Scheer; Editing by Mark Potter)]]>