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Turkish state banks sell US dollars after lira plunge

The sales come a day after the lira’s historic plunge and mark a rare appearance by state banks in the market.
Image: Moe Zoyari/Bloomberg

Turkish state-owned banks sold US dollars amid heightened demand for foreign exchange on Wednesday, people familiar with the matter said.

The sales come a day after the lira’s historic plunge and mark a rare appearance by state banks in the market. The lira rallied sharply on the day, surging as much as 10%.

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Turkey’s policy of foreign-exchange sales came to an end last year amid dwindling foreign reserves. The amount sold by lenders was less than it used to be, said the people, who asked not to be identified.

State banks don’t comment on interventions in the foreign-exchange market. In January last year, then central-bank governor Murat Uysal said government-owned lenders have been carrying out transactions in line with regulatory limits and may continue to be active in the currency market.

The currency traded up 4.7% at 12.2444 per US dollar as of 7:36 p.m. in Istanbul. The rebound comes after an 11-day slide that put its year-to-date loss at 39%, the worst performance among emerging markets tracked by Bloomberg.

© 2021 Bloomberg

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