SPRINGFIELD, Ill. (WCIA) — Illinois State Treasurer Mike Frerichs has announced that his office will invest $10 million in Israel in response to Hamas’ attack on the country last week.
This investment is the latest of several Frerich’s office has made since he became Treasurer of Illinois in 2015, totaling over $100 million. He explained that the investments diversify the state’s portfolio, draw attention to the partnership between the state’s economy and Israel and achieve a good return from what is described as a safe investment – Israel Bonds have never defaulted in their 70 years as an investment.
“After being absolutely sickened by the ongoing atrocities, we reached out to our Israeli partners and asked what we can do to help. This investment is a direct result of those conversations,” Frerichs said. “This investment shows our strong commitment to Israel and its people. The challenges in the region are great. Israel is now at war. This is our way to show, with action and deeds as well as words, that we want to do what we can in this time of need.”
Frerichs added that past investments in Israel Bonds affirm the special relationship that Illinois has with Israel, and that now is the right time to reaffirm that relationship. He went on to denounce Hamas, saying the group does not represent the Palestinian people.
“It does not seek peaceful coexistence or democratic self-determination,” Frerichs said. “Hamas seeks the annihilation of the State of Israel and the slaughter of Jewish civilians while using Palestinian civilians as human shields.”
The Developemnt Corporation for Israel will facilitate Frerich’s latest investment. The bonds will mature in five years at an interest rate of 5.74 percent.
Israel Bonds even has a connection to Illinois dating back to the beginning in the early 1950s: Peoria native Sam Rothberg was a founder of the program.