Turkey’s stock exchange moves to keep assets in local currency after Erdoğan’s call

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Brokers works at the Istanbul Stock Exchange in Istanbul, 30 April 2007. The Turkish lira tumbled iearly 30 April 2007 in line with heavy losses on the Istanbul stock market, amid a tense standoff between the Islamist-rooted government and the army over presidential elections. AFP PHOTO/HOCINE ZAOURAR / AFP PHOTO / HOCINE ZAOURAR

Turkey’s stock exchange, Borsa İstanbul (BİST), on Friday moved to keep all its cash assets in accounts denominated in Turkish lira.

 

“In support of the call by H.E. President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan today, Borsa İstanbul has decided to convert all its cash assets to Turkish lira and keep such assets in accounts denominated in Turkish lira as of Dec. 2, 2016,” BİST said in a statement late on Friday.

 

The statement came hours after Erdoğan urged citizens to sell of their foreign currency in order to prevent the lira from further depreciation against the US dollar.

“They have been talking about a currency issue very recently. Those who save foreign currencies under the pillow should convert them into gold or lira. Let’s do that and not help foreign currencies rise,” said the president.

Yet his remarks have failed to stop the lira in its freefall. Having hovered at around 3.487 early in the morning, the lira had fallen to around 3.5935 against the greenback by mid-day. The currency also weakened to as low as 3.80715 against the euro the same day.

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