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Why Turks keep billions 'under the pillow'

Amid waning confidence in Turkey’s economic prospects, many Turks have come to shun the financial system and keep their savings at home.
ISTANBUL, TURKEY - NOVEMBER 21:  Turkish Lira currency is seen on November 21, 2017 in Istanbul, Turkey. The Turkish Lira plunged to a record low of 3.978 against the dollar in early Tuesday trading. Concern's over deteriorating relations with the U.S. and the central bank continue to effect Turkish markets.  (Photo by Chris McGrath/Getty Images)
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Much to President Recep Tayyip Erdogan’s chagrin, economic woes have been a dominant issue ahead of Turkey’s June 24 presidential and parliamentary polls, with both economic actors and ordinary Turks stuck between a plummeting Turkish lira and rising interest rates.

To stop the slump of the lira, the central bank has twice raised interest rates since May, when the price of the dollar shot up to a historic high of more than 4.9 liras. Despite the two rate hikes — 4.5 percentage points in total — the dollar’s price remains above 4.7 liras, keeping the central bank under pressure for further action.

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