TODAY’S ZAMAN – Lira sinks further to above 2.57 against dollar

Lira sinks further to above 257 against dollarThe Turkish lira weakened to a record low above 257 against the US dollar on Wednesday, hit by the strength of the dollar and with concerns about government pressure on the central bank continuing to weigh on sentiment.On Wednesday afternoon, the lira stood at 25710 against the dollar, hitting above Tuesdayand#39s record low of 254.

Main share index Borsa Istanbul (BIST) fell more than 2 percent on Wednesday. Economy minister Nihat Zeybekci said later on Wednesday that there are no worries over the rising dollar and the lira simultaneously hovering around record lows.

The central bank increased its daily foreign exchange auction amount to $60 million on the same day.The Central Bank of Turkey said on Wednesday that the real effective exchange rate of the lira, which the bank is monitoring to avoid excessive volatility, fell to 113.

22 in February from a revised 117.12 in January.

The rate measures the weighted average of domestic prices relative to those of Turkeyand#39s trading partners.Turkey among top ten andlsquomiserableand#39 economiesTurkey is among the worldand#39s 10 most miserable economies, according to a Bloomberg survey data released on Tuesday.

Bloomberg has analyzed the economic situation in 51 countries and believes that Venezuela, Argentina, South Africa, Ukraine and Greece are andquotthe five most painful economies in which to live and work.andquot Bloomberg said its so-called andldquomisery indexandrdquo is andquota simple equation: unemployment rate + change in the consumer price index = misery.

andquot Turkish unemployment was 10.7 percent in November, a near four-year high.

Turkish joblessness persistently remained in double digits for much of last year Moreover, the rate of unregistered employment was 33.9 percent, meaning that one in every three people employed in Turkey are working without social security benefits.

Inflation in Turkey rose to 755 percent in February from 724 percent in January, remaining significantly above the central bankand#39s target. To make things even worse, the strength of the dollar and political pressure on the central bank pushed the Turkish lira to a historic low of 256 against the US dollar on Wednesday.

The improvement in Turkish core inflation indicators continued in February, when a rise in inflation was largely due to food prices, the Central Bank of Turkey said on Wednesday. In a statement after data on Tuesday showed consumer prices rose a slightly lower-than-expected 071 percent in February, the bank said non-food annual inflation continued to fall.

SOURCE: Today’s Zaman