Turkish lira rises as markets don’t take Trump’s tariff threats seriously

Source: CNBC | October 15, 2019 | Natasha Turak

DUBAI — Turkish assets are breathing a sigh of relief after tariffs threatened by President Donald Trump over Ankara’s military offensive in Syria came up less serious than markets had expected.

Turkey’s lira rose in Tuesday morning trading on the back of a statement by Trump promising a 50% tariff on Turkish steel imports and a halt to trade negotiations between Ankara and Washington — penalties that analysts are calling “window dressing.”

The dollar was down 1% against the lira for the session, with the Turkish currency trading at 5.8628 per dollar at 8 a.m. London time on Tuesday.

The tariff threats are mere “window dressing from Trump,” said Timothy Ash, senior emerging markets strategist at Bluebay Asset Management. “Minimal sanctions. A few individuals. A trade deal which was years off anyway. And steel tariffs up to 50% — Turkey hardly exports any (steel to the U.S.) anyway,” Ash said in an emailed note.

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