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Goldman Warns Turkish Banks Will Be Wiped Out If Lira Hits 7.1

After its worst day in 10 years, the Turkish Lira’s early rebound is already starting to fade amid denied rumors of US officials predicting Lira’s demise, a record high yield at its bond auction, and Goldman warning of the collapse of Turkey’s financial system.

Turkey’s 10Y bond yield topped 20% for the first time ever and Turkey’s Treasury sold 539.7 million liras of 5Y debt today at 22.1% compound yield.

With tensions remaining high, the U.S. Embassy in Turkey has denied news in Turkish media that a U.S. official predicted the lira would weaken to 7 per dollar, calling the claim an entirely baseless “lie.” In two tweets, the Embassy said:

“Despite current tensions, the United States continues to be a solid friend and ally of Turkey. Our countries have a vibrant economic relationship.”

“For this reason, it is unfortunate and disturbing that an American official, who estimates that the U.S. dollar will be $7 TL, is completely unfounded and irresponsible in the Turkish media. It’s a fabricated and baseless lie.”

Well, they are right, it was not “officials” from the US government, it was “unofficials” from Government Goldman Sachs warns that further lira depreciation to 7.1 would erode all of Turkey’s banks’ excess capital.

Within the current backdrop, we view banks as being vulnerable to Turkish Lira depreciation given that it impacts:

(1) capital levels due to a meaningful portion of FC assets, which increase RWAs in local currency terms on Turkish Lira depreciation,

(2) asset quality and cost of risk, as Turkish Lira volatility can put stress on borrowers’ ability to repay as well as underlying collateral values. Moreover, Lira depreciation leads to higher provisioning requirements for FC NPLs, though banks are hedging this risk and can offset the impact through trading income.

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