Turkey central bank ready to take ‘all necessary measures’ for stability

The lira has lost around 45 percent of its value against the US currency this year, largely over worries about President Tayyip Erdogan’s influence over the Turkish economy. (Reuters)
Updated 15 August 2018

Turkey central bank ready to take ‘all necessary measures’ for stability

  • The lira has lost around 45 percent of its value against the US currency this year, largely over worries about President Tayyip Erdogan’s influence over the economy
  • Turkey’s banking watchdog BBDK in a statement said it was limiting banks’ foreign exchange swap transactions

ISTANBUL: Turkey’s central bank on Monday announced it was ready to take “all necessary measures” to ensure financial stability after the collapse of the lira, promising to provide banks with liquidity.

“The central bank will closely monitor the market depth and price formations, and take all necessary measures to maintain financial stability, if deemed necessary,” the bank said in a statement, vowing to provide “all the liquidity the banks need.”

The statement came after the Turkish lira hit record lows against the dollar amid a widening diplomatic spat with the United States.

The detention of US pastor Andrew Brunson since October 2016 on terrorism charges has sparked the most severe crisis in ties between the two NATO allies in years.

The central bank announced the series of measures on Monday, a day after Erdogan’s son-in-law Berat Albayrak, who is treasury and finance minister, announced an action plan was in the pipeline.

“In the framework of intraday and overnight standing facilities, the Central Bank will provide all the liquidity the banks need,” the bank said.

The bank also revised reserve requirement ratios for banks, in a move also aimed at staving off any liquidity issues.

It said with the latest revision, approximately 10 billion lira, $6 billion, and $3 billion equivalent of gold liquidity will be provided to the financial system.

The nominally independent central bank has defied pressure to hike interest rates which economists said would curb the fall of the lira.

Erdogan on Saturday called interest rates as “tool of exploitation” that makes the poor poorer and the rich richer.


Lufthansa to freeze hiring, cut costs over coronavirus

Updated 26 February 2020

Lufthansa to freeze hiring, cut costs over coronavirus

  • ‘All new hires ... will be reassessed, suspended or deferred’
  • Lufthansa has also slashed connections with Hong Kong in the face of reduced demand

FRANKFURT AM MAIN: German airline Lufthansa said Wednesday it would freeze new hires and use unpaid leave and additional short-time work to cut costs to help cushion the economic impact of the novel coronavirus.
“To counteract the economic impact of the coronavirus of the early stage,” the group, which also owns carriers Austrian and Swiss, said in a statement that “all new hires ... will be reassessed, suspended or deferred.”
Employees would be offered unpaid leave and more part-time work and the group would also seek to cut administrative costs, it said.
“It is not yet possible to estimate the expected impact ... on earnings,” the group said, adding that it would provide more details at its annual results press conference on March 19.
The Frankfurt-based group said 13 of its aircraft were grounded, after it canceled all flights to and from mainland China by its flagship airline, as well as Austrian and Swiss until March 28.
Lufthansa has also slashed connections with Hong Kong in the face of reduced demand “and additional frequency adjustments to and from Frankfurt, Munich and Zurich are planned,” it said.