Trading of Bank Asya shares suspended again after sharp fluctuations

Trading of Bank Asya shares suspended again after sharp fluctuations

Trading of Bank Asya shares suspended again after sharp fluctuations


Turkish stock exchange Borsa Istanbul briefly suspended the trading of Islamic lender Bank Asya shares Sept. 18, citing extraordinary movements in the exchange of the lender’s shares.

Before the suspension, the Islamic lender had bounced back from record lows after three straight days of losses, as investors wanting to reduce costs rushed to buy the shares of the lender, which has been at the center of a political feud.

Bank Asya shares’ trading surged nearly 11 percent to 0.71 Turkish Liras ($0.32) in the morning session after sliding 11 percent at the opening.

The lender lost some of its gains after President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan’s statements about the bank.
“It’s being said that there are efforts being made to sink a bank. There is no work being done to sink a bank. This bank has already failed. They are trying to keep it afloat with a few buckets of water,” the president said, addressing business group TÜSİAD at a conference in Istanbul.

The lender’s shares have halved in value since the start of this week, when they resumed trading after more than a month’s suspension over uncertainty regarding the bank’s future.

A banking sector analyst said some investors sought to benefit from record low levels and reduce average buying costs, rushing to buy shares, despite not having any new reports that could trigger a steep movement.

A portfolio manager said he does not expect the shares to reach their highest price after being traded at their lowest for three days.

“Investors price the political risk that accumulated from when the trading was sharply suspended. Therefore, I think the prices will fluctuate between their highest and lowest prices until a new balance is attained,” he said.

On Sept. 16, Erdoğan said the banking watchdog BDDK should “take steps” against Bank Asya if necessary, but did not specify what that might involve.

A day later, the bank said that it was raising its paid-in capital by 25 percent to 1.125 billion liras ($509 million) with cash from shareholders.