Foreign investors acted in opposing ways in Turkey last year. One group sold off whatever they had in their portfolios and left. The flight of so-called hot money — short-term investments in treasury bonds and stock shares — reached an unprecedented level in Turkish history.
Faik Oztrak, former treasury undersecretary, told Al-Monitor that foreign-held portfolios experienced a net cash out of $9.4 billion in 2015, exceeding sell-offs during Turkey’s financial crises from 2001 to 2008. The 2001 capital flight, totaling some $7 billion, was particularly biting due to Turkey’s low foreign reserves at the time.