Israel Hayom
ישראל היום
Front page, 27 July 2016
TypeFree daily newspaper
PublisherMiriam Adelson
Editor-in-chiefOmer Lachmanovitch
General managerAmir Finkelstein
News editorUri Dagon
Sports editorOfri Amrami
Photo editorAmi Shooman
Launched30 July 2007; 16 years ago (2007-07-30)
Political alignmentCentre-right[1] to right-wing[2]
National liberalism
Headquarters2 Ha-Shlosha St., Tel Aviv
Circulation275,000 (as of 2017)[3]
  • 31%
  • (as of 2021)[4]
Sister newspapersMakor Rishon[5]
OCLC number234764640
Free online

Israel Hayom (Hebrew: יִשְׂרָאֵל הַיּוֹם, lit.'Israel Today') is an Israeli national Hebrew-language free daily newspaper. Distributed for free around Israel,[6] it is the country's most widely distributed newspaper.[7][2] Owned by the family of Sheldon Adelson, a personal friend and benefactor of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, Israel Hayom has often been criticized for portraying Netanyahu in an overly positive light.[8] In turn, Netanyahu has been accused of attempting to benefit Adelson's investments.[9][10]


The Israel Hayom headquarters in Tel Aviv

Israel Hayom's print edition, "financed by the American casino billionaire Sheldon Adelson,"[11] was launched on 30 July 2007, competing directly with Israeli, another free daily. That same year, Maariv editor Dan Margalit left the newspaper to write for Israel Hayom. A weekend edition was launched in October 2009. In 2014, Israel Hayom bought Israeli media outlets Makor Rishon and nrg מעריב.[5]

In May 2014 the name מעריב (Maariv) was removed from nrg log,[12] and it was rebranded as nrg. Following the acquisition an antitrust complaint was filed against Israel Hayom, which resulted in a court order that requested the transfer of the maariv domain name to Maariv weekly.[13] In 2017, nrg was renamed to nrg360, and on 10 January 2018 the website closed; all of its content was merged into the Makor Rishon website.

Later that year, it's believed, was when Sheldon Adelson invested at least $50 million in Israel Hayom.[14] Adelson's support of Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu led the latter's political opponents in the Knesset to sponsor a bill that would prevent the distribution of newspapers in Israel for free. Although framed as a bill to prevent unfair competition and save the Israeli print newspaper industry, there was an outcry against it.[15] Critics of the bill said it hurts free enterprise and is a thinly veiled attempt to target Adelson and his political causes, as Israel Hayom was then Israel's only free-of-charge national newspaper. The bill passed the first reading in the Knesset, but not subsequent ones.[16] In 2016, Adelson's attorney announced that although it was commonly believed that Adelson owned the newspaper, it was owned by a relative of his.[17]

In January 2021, Saudi-American independent academic researcher, Najat Al-Saied, became the first person from the Arab states of the Persian Gulf to join Israel Hayom.[18]

Political leaning

According to a 2022 study, Israel Hayom benefitted Netanyahu and his Likud party electorally.[19]

A 2008 study by Moran Rada published in The Seventh Eye showed that while competing newspapers' coverage of Netanyahu was "not especially fair", Israel Hayom's coverage was biased in favor of Netanyahu in most editorial decisions, and that the paper chooses to play down events that do not help to promote a positive image for Netanyahu, while on the other hand touting and inflating events that help promote Netanyahu and the Likud.[20] Oren Persico reached the same conclusion after the 2009 Knesset elections, writing that throughout the campaign Israel Hayom published only one article critical of the Likud, and tens of articles critical of Kadima.[21]

A popular nickname of Israel Hayom is the "Bibiton", a portmanteau of Netanyahu's nickname "Bibi" with the Hebrew word for newspaper, iton.[8] During his tenure as Prime Minister, Ehud Olmert criticized Israel Hayom.[22][23] Journalist Ben-Dror Yemini described the paper as having "endless capital with a political agenda".[6]

In 2016, the paper formally endorsed the presidential campaign of Donald Trump.[24][25]

Connection to Benjamin Netanyahu

Israel Hayom is owned by the family of Netanyahu's personal friend and benefactor Sheldon Adelson, and is often criticized by the political left for portraying Netanyahu in an overly positive light. In 2019, Netanyahu was indicted in five cases of alleged corruption; one of the cases, case 2000, directly involved Israel Hayom. According to the investigations, Netanyahu held three meetings with Arnon Mozes, editor of Yedioth Ahronoth, the main competitor of Israel Hayom, during which Netanyahu offered to limit the circulation of Israel Hayom[26] in exchange for Yedioth Ahronoth hiring journalists with more favorable views of himself.[27][28]

Market share

Israel Hayom readers in Jerusalem

Being distributed for free, Israel Hayom has an advantage over other daily newspapers in Israel. In July 2010, Israel Hayom surpassed Yedioth Ahronoth in weekday exposure rate in the semi-annual Target Group Index (TGI) survey.[29]

As of January 1, 2024, a TGI survey indicated that Israel Hayom, distributed for free, is Israel's most read newspaper, with a 27.4% weekday readership exposure, followed by Yedioth Ahronoth, with 22.4%, Haaretz with 5.4%, Maariv with 3.5%, Globes with 3/2% and.[30]

As of July 31, 2023, a TGI survey indicated that Israel Hayom, distributed for free, is Israel's most read newspaper, with a 29.4% weekday readership exposure, followed by Yedioth Ahronoth, with 22.3%, Haaretz with 4.8%, Globes with 4% and Maariv with 3.9%.[31]

In January 2016, citing internal records from Israel Hayom, Haaretz revealed that between 2007 and 2014, the newspaper lost about 730 million shekels ($190 million), approximately equal to a shekel per copy printed.[32]


Senior management[33]

See also


  1. ^ Bernard Reich; David H. Goldberg, eds. (2016). Historical Dictionary of Israel. Rowman & Littlefield Publishers. p. 271. ISBN 9781442271852.
  2. ^ a b "Meet the Israelis praying for a Trump win". The Los Angeles Times. 17 March 2016.
  3. ^ "Israel and the Middle East News Update" (PDF). S. Daniel Abraham Center for Middle East Peace. 4 March 2015. Retrieved 26 November 2016.
  4. ^ The TGI survey published this morning sheds light on the exposure data for 2021
  5. ^ a b Ronen, Gil (30 April 2014). "Israel Hayom Buys Makor Rishon, NRG Website". Arutz Sheva. Retrieved 23 November 2016.
  6. ^ a b Stewart, Catrina (23 October 2011). "The press baron who's making news in Israel". The Independent. Retrieved 28 November 2015.
  7. ^ Yaakov, Yifa (30 March 2014). "Bennett lashes Israel Hayom over Makor Rishon bid". The Times of Israel. Retrieved 13 November 2015.
  8. ^ a b Ronen, Gil (26 January 2015). "Media Election War: 'Bibiton' Lashes Out at 'Bujiton'". Arutz Sheva. Retrieved 28 November 2015.
  9. ^ David M. Halbfinger (13 June 2021). "Netanyahu, 'King of Israel,' Exits a Stage He Dominated". The New York Times. Retrieved 10 January 2023. allegations that he bribed media executives for favorable news coverage,
  10. ^ Joshua Mitnick (11 January 2017). "Criminal investigation of Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu". The Los Angeles Times. Retrieved 10 January 2023. reportedly ... to limit the power of Yediot Aharonot's main rival, Israel Hayom
  11. ^ "Netanyahu's Obsession With Image Could Be His Downfall". The New York Times. 3 December 2018.
  12. ^ "סיומה של תקופה: לאחר עשור - המילה 'מעריב' הוסרה הערב מהלוגו של NRG".
  13. ^ אברבך, לי-אור (5 June 2014). "ביהמ"ש: הדומיין "מעריב" יעבור לרשות "מעריב השבוע"". Globes.
  14. ^ Pfeffer, Anshel (12 November 2014). "Everything You Need to Know About the Israel Hayom (Or anti-Sheldon Adelson) Law". Haaretz. Retrieved 28 November 2015.
  15. ^ JNS: Josh Hasten (21 May 2014). "Bill to Ban Free Israeli Newspapers Sparks Outcry". Retrieved 10 January 2023. (
  16. ^ Harkov, Lahav (12 November 2014). "Israel Hayom bill 'shames the Knesset,' PM says". The Jerusalem Post. Retrieved 28 November 2015.
  17. ^ "Adelson's attorney says billionaire doesn't own Israel Hayom"
  18. ^ "Najat Al-Saied". Israel Hayom.
  19. ^ Grossman, Guy; Margalit, Yotam; Mitts, Tamar (2022). "How the Ultrarich Use Media Ownership as a Political Investment". The Journal of Politics. 84 (4): 1913–1931. doi:10.1086/719415. ISSN 0022-3816. S2CID 252818436.
  20. ^ Rada, Moran (9 July 2008). נתניהו שילם, מה אתם רוצים ממנו? [Netanyahu paid, what do you want from him?]. The Seventh Eye (in Hebrew). Retrieved 28 November 2015.
  21. ^ Persico, Oren (10 February 2009). אצל אביגדור בחצר [Avigdor in Court]. The Seventh Eye (in Hebrew). Retrieved 28 November 2015.
  22. ^ Bruck, Connie (30 June 2008). "The Brass Ring". The New Yorker. Retrieved 28 November 2015.
  23. ^ "Adelson rejects Olmert claims on PM influence". The Jerusalem Post. 12 November 2012. Retrieved 28 November 2015.
  24. ^ Sterman, Adiv (17 March 2016). "Donald Trumps the Hebrew media". The Times of Israel. Retrieved 23 January 2017.
  25. ^ "Herzog calls on Netanyahu to disavow allies who support Trump", Lahav Harkov, 11/07/2016, The Jerusalem Post
  26. ^ "For Israel's Netanyahu, a legal net tightens and talk turns to ..." The Los Angeles Times. 8 August 2017. a deal .. cut .. circulation
  27. ^ "Benjamin Netanyahu: What are the corruption charges?". BBC News. 22 May 2020. Archived from the original on 1 December 2020. Retrieved 23 November 2020.
  28. ^ Bandel, Natael (21 November 2019). "Ex-tycoon, News Publisher Indicted for Bribery in Netanyahu Cases". Haaretz. Archived from the original on 27 April 2021. Retrieved 27 April 2021.
  29. ^ Averbach, Li-or (28 July 2015). "After decades, 'Yediot' no longer top newspaper". Globes. Retrieved 29 November 2015.
  30. ^ "סקר TGI: ישראל היום או ידיעות אחרונות - זה העיתון החזק בישראל". Ice (in Hebrew). 1 January 2024. Retrieved 1 January 2024.
  31. ^ "סקר TGI: דרמה בצמרת הפרינט והפתעה בעיתונות סוף השבוע". Ice (in Hebrew). 31 July 2023. Retrieved 31 July 2023.
  32. ^ Uri Blau (10 January 2017). "Adelson's pro-Netanyahu Free Daily Newspaper Lost $190 Million in Seven Years". Haaretz.
  33. ^ "Senior Management". Israel Hayom. Retrieved 7 November 2017.
  34. ^ "Our team leaders - Editorial team". Israel Hayom. Retrieved 23 November 2016.