Turkish leader Erdogan criticizes central bank’s rate hike

Turkish leader Erdogan criticizes central bank’s rate hike

Turkish leader Erdogan criticizes central bank’s rate hike

Rental and sale agreements are often conducted in foreign currencies in the retail sector and also to foreigners living in Turkey, AFP reported.

On Thursday the Turkish Central Bank raised its one-week repo rate by 625 base points, from 17.75 percent to 24 percent. The lira has lost roughly 40 percent of its value against the USA dollar this year, and its inflation rate sits at about 18 percent.

The bank said that inflation developments pointed "to significant risks to price stability" due to the recent fall in value of the lira.

But the bank has not touched interest rates since early June with markets concerned that the policy of the nominally independent bank is being dictated by Erdogan, who has denounced interest rates as the "mother and father of all evil". "If you say 'inflation is cause, the rate is the result, ' you do not know this business, friend".

In the currency market, the dollar began to nudge higher again having been dampened by Wednesday's soft USA wholesale price data, which had undermined the case for a faster pace of interest rate hikes by the Federal Reserve. "My sensitivity to interest rates is the same, and that's not a crisis, it's a manipulation, do not be mistaken, that's going to be overcome", added the Turkish President. He added that the Turkish central bank is independent and will make its own decision.

Even if this is a step in the right direction, the crisis of lira is not over.

The lira collapsed against the dollar last month amid concerns about Erdogan's growing control over monetary policy in Turkey and a dispute with the U.S. that led to sanctions.

Relations with the USA deteriorated last month after Washington imposed sanctions on two Turkish ministers over the detention of an American pastor and President Donald Trump doubled steel and aluminium tariffs on Turkey.

The initial reaction from market has been positive for the Turkish lira with USD/TRY down to 6.20 from 6.45, which is around 4 percent stronger.

The Turkish currency has plunged some 40 percent against the dollar this year while annual inflation has jumped to almost 18 percent and economic growth has slowed to an annual rate of 5.2 percent.

Erdogan called on Turkey's exporters to take advantage of the current levels in foreign exchange rates to increase the volume of exports, and production and employment as well.

Some analysts predict that the decree on property transactions could have a negative impact on property sales in Turkey, especially by overseas investors.

Erdoğan also said that Turkey is putting new government investments on hold, ministries were reviewing their plans and would not consider making fresh investments. "It's only really going to be a bit problematic if you're repatriating to the country you came from".

Both actions came after Erdogan named himself the head of the country's nascent sovereign wealth fund on September 11, giving himself even more control over the country's slowing economy.

President Tayyip Erdogan of Turkey on Friday again blamed the U. The central bank said it would keep high rates until inflation eases.

The wealth fund has stakes in top companies, including Turkish Airlines; telecom companies Turk Sat and Turk Telecom; state lenders Ziraat Bank and Halk Bank; the national postal service; the Istanbul stock market; petroleum, mining, railways, ports, tea and sugar conglomerates; and the national lottery.

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