Turkey’s lira slides against dollar, down 23 percent so far this year

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The Turkish lira dropped 2 percent against the dollar on Wednesday, bringing its losses to 23 percent this year, after worries about a surge in inflation were fuelled by President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan’s pledge to keep cutting interest rates, Reuters reported.

The lira weakened as far as 17.1 to the US currency, sliding from Tuesday’s close of 16.7650 to the record low that it hit on Dec. 20 in a currency crisis triggered by a series of unorthodox interest rate cuts.

The currency has weakened in 12 of the last 14 trading sessions.

Speaking after a cabinet meeting on Monday, Erdoğan said Turkey will not raise interest rates but rather continue cutting them in the face of high living costs.

The lira shed 44 percent last year and has been the worst performer in emerging markets for several years running due largely to economic and monetary policy concerns under Erdoğan’s government. Annual inflation soared to 73.5 percent last month.

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