(Globes (Tel Aviv) Via Acquire Media NewsEdge) Feb. 26--IBI Investment House Ltd. today warned that mobile carriers Cellcom Israel Ltd. (NYSE:CEL; TASE:CEL) and Orange franchisee Partner Communications Ltd. (Nasdaq: PTNR; TASE: PTNR) are liable to be relegated from the Tel Aviv 25 Index. Analyst Uri Licht cut his recommendations for the carriers from "Buy" to "Neutral", and cut his target price for Cellcom from NIS 45 to NIS 34 and cut his target price for Partner from NIS 27 to NIS 26 for Partner. Cellcom opened at NIS 26.81 on the TASE today and Partner opened at NIS 20.62. Both shares fell by over 1 percent by midday.
"Cellcom and Partner's financial reports, which will be published within two weeks, will be weak, indicating that trends of recent quarters are intensifying, with sharp declines in average revenue per user (ARPU), revenue from services, and in profits and profit margins," says Licht.
He adds, "We are long-term investors, and the valuations models derived from the target prices are higher from the companies' market caps. It is now also clear that the low trading in the shares will make it harder to build a large position for the day when we see a U-turn in the trend."
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