Turkish lira dropping and markets around the world are reeling


Global markets are selling off following last Friday’s collapse of the Turkish lira.

China’s benchmark Shanghai Composite index immediately fell by more than 1% after the opening bell at 11:30am AEST — a fall matched by similar declines in Hong Kong and South Korea.

Shares in Japan are also down more than 1.6%, weighed down by a stronger yen as money moves to safe-haven assets.

US stock futures are also lower. Dow futures were down by 0.47%, or around 118 points, while futures for the broader S&P500 were down 0.38%.

Turkey’s currency saw some wild moves in early Monday trade, selling off 10% at the open before a rally and another fall. Markets remain unclear on any response from the government in Turkey — where President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has been widening his control over economic policy — following Friday’s events.

Here’s the chart showing USD/TRY over the past week. (a higher number indicates a weaker lira)

Markets Insider

The lira’s collapse is one factor contributing to renewed US dollar strength that is starting to put pressure on emerging markets more broadly.

The South African rand fell by as much as 10% to two-year low against the greenback, as weakness in the lira spread to other emerging market currencies.

This shows the dramatic sell-off in the South African rand in Asian trade

Markets Insider

Indonesia’s 10-year bond yield has risen to 7.87% this morning, just shy of a one-month high. Reuters reported that an official from Indonesia’s central bank said it would be “intervening” on Indonesia’s USD exchange rate.

A short time ago, the US dollar was around 1% higher against the Indonesian rupia, and had also gained ground against the Indian rupee and Argentinian peso. The dollar was also more than 1.3% stronger against the Mexican peso.

After opening in negative territory, Australian stocks have continued to slide and a short time ago the ASX200 was around 0.5% lower. The AUD remains under pressure and is at its lowest level against the greenback since the end of 2016.

Here’s a snapshot of Asian markets as at the lunch break (1pm AEST) in Shanghai:

  • Shanghai Composite 2,749.20 , -1.65%
  • SSE50 2,447.27 , -2.23%
  • Shenzhen Composite 1,499.73 , -1.07%
  • CSI300 3,344.65 , -1.77%
  • CSI500 4,977.11 , -1.06%
  • Hang Seng 28,010.09 , -1.71%
  • USD/CNY 6.5973 , 0.46%
  • USD/CNH 6.8846 , 0.27%

The major concern around the lira is that its weakness will start to affect European banks. The eurozone’s chief financial watchdog has become worried about the exposure of major European lenders — mainly Spanish and French banks — to Turkish debt.

The US dollar has been strengthening against most currencies as the American economy has strengthened, allowing the US Federal Reserve to start lifting interest rates. But the backdrop to the fall is a continuing deterioration in relations between Ankara and Washington.

The Trump administration announced further tariffs on Turkish imports on Friday, and Turkish diplomats recently failed to stop the US from imposing sanctions against two senior ministers.

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