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Turkey bank reserves hit highest level since 2014 at $135bn

Turkey’s central bank increased the inflation forecast for 2023 to 65 percent from its previous estimate of 58 percent Reuters/Cagla Gurdogan
Ankara has abandoned a practice of using reserves to directly support the lira currency

The Turkish central bank’s total reserves rose $6 billion last week to $134.5 billion, the highest since September 2014, Reuters reported, citing calculations from four bankers.

President Tayyip Erdoğan appointed a former Wall Street banker, Hafize Gaye Erkan, as governor of the country’s central bank in June.

Since then, the bank has embarked on a 2,650 basis-point tightening cycle, including rises of 500 basis points in each of the last two months.

The central bank did not comment on the figures, the news agency said.

The official data is set to be released on Thursday, November 23.

Earlier this month, Turkey’s central bank increased the inflation forecast for 2023 to 65 percent from its previous estimate of 58 percent. The bank has persisted in gradually tightening its monetary policies.

Erkan said inflation had accelerated because of high food and energy import prices, governor. She said the central bank’s forecast for inflation in 2024 had been raised to 36 percent from 33 percent.

“Getting high and volatile inflation under control will be a long and difficult process. We will continue to use all tools available in a determined way to ensure disinflation,” the Daily Sabah newspaper quoted Erkan as saying.

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