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CBRT holds fire amid lira rally, faltering economy

Turkey’s central bank left its benchmark one-week repo rate unchanged at 17.00% at today’s MPC meeting as concerns about the faltering economic recovery took priority. But the hawkish tone on inflation supports our view that rates will be unchanged throughout the rest of this year.
Jason Tuvey Senior Emerging Markets Economist
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Russia’s government has now reportedly defaulted on its foreign-currency denominated debt for the first time since 1918, but this is a largely symbolic event that is unlikely to have an additional macroeconomic impact. Sanctions have already done the damage and locked Russia out of global capital markets.

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CBRT: knock knock, anybody there?

High inflation, falls in the lira and aggressive monetary tightening elsewhere are clearly not enough to persuade Turkey’s central bank to lift interest rates, as it left its policy rate at 14.00% today. Disorderly falls in the lira are a major risk, which would probably be met with capital controls rather than rate hikes.

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Turkey’s inflation risks mount, CBRT to delay rate cuts

Turkish inflation hit a two-year high in June and recent domestic energy price hikes will cause it to rise even further over the next couple of months. High inflation and signs of a quick recovery from May’s lockdown mean that the central bank will probably delay the start of its easing cycle until later this year. We now expect the one-week repo rate to be lowered to 17.00% by end-2021 (previously 14.00%).

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Emerging Europe Data Response

Turkey Consumer Prices (Jun.)

The fresh rise in Turkey’s headline inflation rate to 17.5% y/y in June, coupled with signs of a strong rebound in activity after May’s three-week lockdown, means that an interest rate cut in the next couple of months is increasingly unlikely. An easing cycle is now more likely to commence later this year when inflation looks set to fall sharply.

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Turkey dollarisation, Ukraine-IMF, Russia & Poland rates

Turkey’s central bank took steps this week to tackle deposit dollarisation in the banking sector, although these efforts will fail to make headway in the absence of a stronger commitment to rein in high inflation. Meanwhile, Ukraine’s government still has work to do to secure the next tranche of its IMF loan, but the economy can muddle through without help from the Fund for some time. Finally, other developments this week suggest that Poland’s central bank may stick to its recent dovish rhetoric while Russia looks like it could accelerate the pace of monetary tightening.

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