Israel’s Economy Contracts Nearly 20% After Outbreak of War

February 20, 2024

(Bloomberg) -- Israel’s economy suffered one of its worst-ever slumps, after the Hamas war paralyzed businesses, forced people to evacuate their homes and caused the military to call up hundreds of thousands of reservists. The Bank of Israel’s growth estimate for 2024 is the same at 2%, while the Finance Ministry sees it at 1.6%. Story continuesEconomic shockwaves from the war have been far more devastating in Palestinian territories, adding to the humanitarian crisis unfolding in Gaza. Israel’s retaliatory offensive has killed some 29,000 people in Gaza, according to health officials in the Hamas-run territory. The central bank already cut interest rates in January for the first time since the height of the global pandemic in 2020, lowering its key rate to 4.5% from 4.75%.