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FINANCE >Borsa Istanbul falls sharply following anti-government protests

ISTANBUL

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Hürriyet Photo

Hürriyet Photo

Istanbul’s stock exchange Borsa Istanbul (BIST) has started the week by falling sharply today, with investors having concerns about the protests against some of the Turkish government’s policies.

Borsa Istanbul National 100 Index fell by 6.43 percent on Monday opening, to 79,047 down from 80,463, then closed at 76,983.66 by falling 10.47 percent in the evening. The index thus completed its Monday sessions with a 9,006.35 point decrease, the worst fall since March 2003. The Turkish Lira also weakened to 1.889 against the dollar, a decline from 1.87 on Friday and near a 16 month low against the dollar. Meanwhile, bond yields jumped to their highest since the beginning of April.

Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan seemed unconcerned by the fluctuation. “Bourse indexes increase and decrease, they are not always stable. When we came to power [about a decade ago] the National 100 Index was around 11,000. It might increase to 100,000 tomorrow. We need to look outside here to see what is happening in foreign stock exchanges, such as the Tokyo bourse,” Erdoğan said earlier today at a press meeting in Istanbul just before his visit to a number of African countries.

Erdoğan’s remarks did not appear to calm down investors about the unrest in Turkey.

Stock sales continued during the second session, experiencing the worst fall during the Erdoğan government.

Sharpest fall in tourism index

The sharpest fall was mainly visible in the tourism index, at more than 13 percent. It was followed by the banking index, which fell by around 9 percent.

There appeared to be panic in the air causing irrational pricing. Local and foreign investors, who are unwilling to take any risks, have tended to sell their stocks now, according to analysts.

June/03/2013

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