Thursday, 18 October, 2018

As Turkey Crisis Mounts, Contagion Jitters Hit Global Banks

The euro has dropped today after the Turkish lira ad Russian rouble plummeted The euro has dropped today after the Turkish lira ad Russian rouble plummeted
Orlando Vargas | 11 August, 2018, 11:25

The U.S. exported $9.75 billion worth of goods-mostly cotton, scrap iron, steel, civilian aircraft parts, coal, and petroleum gases-to Turkey, and imported $9.42 billion worth of goods from them.

U.S. President Donald Trump said he's authorized doubling some metals tariffs on Turkey, citing poor relations with the North Atlantic Treaty Organisation ally amid an escalating conflict over its detention of an American pastor.

The currency slid almost 8 percent in relation to the dollar to a record low of 6.59 shortly after Trump announced the increase on metals duties on Twitter. A 20 percent fall in exports would only reduce GDP by 0.1 percentage point or less per year in the 19 countries that use the euro currency.

On Friday, President Trump announced that he will double America's metal tariffs on Turkey - despite the fact that he has no good reason for doing so.

But analysts say that while there may be losses at some banks, Turkey's economic problems do not pose a big threat to Europe or other big economies like the United States.

Turkey's Foreign Ministry responded, saying "President Trump's decision on imposing additional tariffs targeting our country's steel and aluminum exports, in complete disregard of World Trade Organization rules, can not be associated with seriousness expected from a state".

President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said that Turkey was at economic war, as the country's currency tumbled as much as 20 percent to a record low.

Garanti and its local peers face a wave of corporate defaults and loan restructurings as the lira's collapse makes it harder for Turkish companies to repay the dollars they have borrowed in recent years.

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President Trump and Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan appear in the Roosevelt Room of the White House on May 16, 2017. The lowest exchange rate is 6.64 against the greenback set on Friday. Turkey has mostly done that to itself - until, that is, Trump started tweeting.

Mr Erdogan has been putting pressure on the central bank to not raise interest rates in order to keep fuelling economic growth.

Earlier this week, a Turkish delegation returned from Washington with no movement on the detention of American pastor Andrew Brunson, who is under house arrest in Turkey on terrorism charges. The currency has fallen 66 per cent since the start of the year, pushing up the cost of goods for Turkish people and shaking global investors' confidence in the country. He claims higher rates lead to higher inflation - the opposite of what standard economic theory says. This has caused the decline of the Turkish lira over the last three years. Turkey's energy minister announced on August 8 that Turkey will keep buying liquid natural gas from Iran in violation of US sanctions.

The Brunson dispute triggered the collapse in the Turkish currency as investors feared USA financial sanctions.

It is a Coen brothers-level farce the people of Turkey and every other emerging market that's been caught up in what's now a broader currency sell-off are not laughing at.

"If they have their dollar, we have the people, we have Allah", he said, as the lira continued to fall.

After winning a June election with revamped powers, Erdogan tightened his control over the central bank and appointed his son-in-law Berat Albayrak to head a newly-empowered finance ministry.

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