This past Monday, a group of foremost rabbonim and poskim gathered in the home of HaRav Dov Landau to express their halachic stand on the subject of buying company stocks and securities, and to call upon the public to be alert and informed about the related halachic problems and the ways to avoid the severe prohibitions of interest thereof.
HaRav Landau made the keynote address at the beginning of this meeting in which he described the stringency of the matter and the obligation to rally in preventing the obstacle of ribbis. In the course of the gathering, a letter from HaRav Gershon Eidelstein was read aloud, to which HaRav Chaim Kanievsky had joined.
In the course of the discussion between the attending rabbonim, several solutions were aired in detail which had been arrived at with the authority for securities through a detailed and lucid heter iska, and detailed instructions on how one can invest in these with full halachic endorsement without transgressing any of the aspects of the prohibition of interest. It was also clarified the need for alertness in each transaction involving pension funds.
Other rabbonim who addressed the meeting were HaRav Yehuda Silman; HaRav Moshe Shaul Klein; HaRav Sariel Rosenberg and HaRav Tzvi Weber. Among the messages, the power of the public was highlighted, as had been demonstrated lately by the joining of the chareidi public in finding solutions for the investments program of "Savings for Every Child," (a special State-sponsored program to set aside savings for children) with the blessings of HaRav Aharon Yehuda Leib Shteinman zt"l, and on the tremendous Kiddush Hashem caused as a result of this stand vis-a-vis the investment companies and fiscal authorities. Also present at this meeting were HaRav Shevach Tzvi Rosenblatt, HaRav Nosson HaKohen Kopshitz and HaRav Moshe Stein.
At the conclusion of this gathering, all those present signed a letter stating the importance of the subject and a call to join the Heter Iska in dealing with investment companies with the certification of the Investments Authority. This can be joined through the Kehillos stations and the Nedorim Plus terminals which are now present in virtually all shuls.
HaRav Dov Landau added a postscript to the letter, as follows: "I, too, endorse all of the above to prevent the members of our holy nation from the obstacles of the severe prohibition of ribbis, as was directed by our rabbonim geonim in this exalted matter."