NEW YORK (MarketWatch) -- The Bank of Israel surprised the markets Monday by deciding to raise its benchmark interest rate by 0.25 percentage points to 0.75%. Most analysts expected the central bank to keep rates on hold at 0.5%. The central bank said in a statement that its decision "strikes a balance between the need to moderate inflation and the need to continue to support the recent recovery in economic activity, given that unemployment is expected to continue increasing in the next few months." Setting the interest rate at the low level of 0.75% continues to represent an expansionary monetary policy, the bank said. http://www.marketwatch.com/story/bank-of-israel-raises-interest-rates-to-075-2009-08-24 Courageous move !