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Contextualizing Turkey’s Surprise Interest Rate Hike

Emily Hawthorne
Middle East and North Africa Analyst, Stratfor
Michael Monderer
Senior Analyst for Global Economics, Stratfor
Sep 25, 2020 | 20:27 GMT
A picture taken on Aug. 14, 2018, shows the logo of Turkey's central bank at the entrance of its headquarters in Ankara.

A picture taken on Aug. 14, 2018, shows the logo of Turkey's central bank at the entrance of its headquarters in Ankara.

(ADEM ALTAN/AFP via Getty Images)

On Sept. 24, the Central Bank of the Republic of Turkey (CBRT) announced a surprise interest rate hike in a preemptive move that seeks to prevent the country’s depreciating currency from unfolding into a larger banking or balance of payments and external debt crisis. The steadily declining value of Turkey’s national currency, the lira, is largely the result of economic imbalances -- partially precipitated by a highly negative real interest rate, a credit-fueled construction boom, and large external financing needs, as well as the CBRT’s lack of credibility and near exhaustion of Ankara’s foreign currency reserves....

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