Turkish shares climb 6.9 percent
Turkish shares climbed 6.9 percent Thursday, March 1, sending the key index to more than 9,000 points for the first time since a political crisis broke out last month. The Istanbul stock exchange's national index rose 615 points to close at 9,406 points, breaking above 9,000 for the first time the political dispute led to a 14.6-percent slump on February 19.
The rally was linked both to stabilization of markets and to built-in financial incentives to buy before the approaching Muslim holiday of Sacrifice Feast, a broker said.
"Those who bought today will not have to pay until 10 days later," when the markets reopen, allowing investors to settle accounts, a dealer told AFP on condition of anonymity. Another broker said there was a wave of optimism over the possible appointment of respected economist and senior World Bank official Kemel Dervis to the helm of the Turkish central bank.
Average interest rates were 136 percent on the repurchase market and 96 percent on the interbank market, falling abruptly from 4,000 percent amid a cash crunch last week.
The stock exchange slumped and interest rates sky-rocketed on fears of political instability after Prime Minister Bulent Ecevit clashed with President Ahmet Necdet Sezer over ways to fight corruption.
The crisis forced Ankara to scrap a predetermined currency rate regime and float the lira, allowing it to depreciate by a total so far of about 30 percent against the dollar. —(AFP)
© Agence France Presse 2000
© 2001 Mena Report (www.menareport.com)