Israel sells bonds. Put simply: Is buying such a bond - and receiving interest on it - an issur of ribbis, or lifnei iver for ribbis?


1 Answer 1


I am a bit surprised that there appears to be nothing about this on the Israel Bonds web site. A bit of searching found this article about Exemptions from the Ribis Laws:

E. State of Israel Bonds

One of the most popular and efficacious means of financing the State of Israel's burgeoning needs is the sale of bonds. Is a Heter Iska required for every transaction? Rav Pinchas Teitz, writing in Hapardes some 30 years ago, rationalizes the practice of selling Israeli bonds without a Heter Iska on the basis that Ribis implies a known creditor and debtor. Here, however, one cannot identify the individuals backing the bonds. Nor at the time of the transaction does the lender know the debtor's identity. Furthermore, it could be argued that all bonds are sold through a broker, invoking Rashi's opinion that ריבית על ידי שליח is not prohibited. He also raises the corporate status of the Jewish State, the fact that the Ribis involved in each bond is less than a Perutah (the halachic equivalent of a penny) per citizen of Israel, and interestingly enough, the argument that Arabs are also issuers of Israeli bonds, thus involving a non-Jewish partner in the transaction. However, a respondent in the periodical Hamaor (Jubilee Volume) strongly disputes Rav Teitz's assertion and requires a Heter Iska for bonds.

  • 1
    But then where does that leave us if there is an opinion on either side and no maskana l'halachah?
    – Yehuda
    Apr 3 at 22:56

You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .