More than half of Israelis who have bank accounts are in overdraft at least one month a year on average, according data released by the Central Bureau of Statistics Thursday. The data focused on the 1.2 million Israeli households (covering 4.3 million people) who even had bank accounts. ֿ
An additional three million plus are “unbanked” do not have accounts in Israel at all. Many of the unbanked are in the Arab sector; for example, 47% of Arab households do not have a credit or debit card, compared to 12% of Jewish households.
According to the data, 37% of the “banked” account holders were contacted at least once last year by a bank official to discuss their overdraft. Six percent (76,000 households) found their accounts blocked by their bank at least once last year, mostly due to demands for payment and sheriff (hotza'a lapoa'l) orders.
A total of 29% of householders in Israel have a mortgage on their house or have taken out home improvement loans. However, the vast majority of mortgage holders are Jews; only 7% of Arabs finance their homes with banks, preferring to pay cash or through other methods.
The largest number – 37% – of mortgages are held by people ages 41-66, whole for those 20-25, the figure is just 18%. In addition, it is the more educated who have mortgages; of those who studied only up to 8 years or less, 12% had mortgages, but 36% of college graduates had one.