Trump doubles steel & aluminum tariffs on Turkey

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"As he stated, the president has authorized the preparation of documents to raise tariffs on imports of steel and aluminum from Turkey", White House Deputy Press Secretary Lindsay Walters said.

Following a few uneventful days of summer trading, Turkey's lira tumbled 14% on Friday, as a standoff over an imprisoned USA pastor led to President Donald Trump doubling tariffs on that nation's steel and aluminum exports.

But the trade minister, Ruhsar Pekcan, said: "We implore President Trump to return to the negotiating table".

The United States is the biggest destination for Turkish steel exports with 11% of the Turkish export volume.

Trump is also declaring that, "Our relations with Turkey are not good at this time!".

The Turkish lira plunged on Friday, raising questions about the country's financial stability, as investors anxious about the president's unorthodox economic policies and a dispute with the United States that has led to sanctions.

Trump tweeted he had authorized a 20 percent duty on aluminum and 50 percent one on steel.

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A financial shockwave ripped through Turkey on Friday as its currency nosedived on concerns about its economic policies and a dispute with the USA, which President Donald Trump stoked further with a promise to double tariffs on the North Atlantic Treaty Organisation ally.

"If there is anyone who has dollars or gold under their pillows, they should go exchange it for liras at our banks".

The lira tumbled 14 per cent in one day, to 6.51 per dollar, a massive move for a currency that will make the Turkish poorer and further erode global investors' confidence in the country.

Brunson, who denies the accusations, could spend the rest of his life in prison if convicted.

Adding to Turkey's fiscal woes, new pension and spending increases announced by president Erdogan in the lead-up to his recent election win have further weakened the outlook for Turkey's public finances.

This week, the Turkish lira has fallen 23% against the dollar, losing almost a quarter of its value.

A Turkish delegation met with officials from the departments of State and Treasury earlier this week as both sides sought a way out of the rising tensions.

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The ripple effects of Turkey's spiraling currency crisis was felt globally as the Dow Jones Industrial Average and the S&P 500 fell 0.8% and 0.5%, respectively, following Trump's tweet. High level meetings in Washington between USA and Turkish officials ended this week without an apparent resolution.

"In that sense, the Turkey situation can be a contagion not only in Europe but across emerging markets", Anderson said. According to figures from the Turkish Government, for the period of 2002 to October 2017, Turkish direct investments in the United States reached $3.7 billion while US investments in Turkey amounted to $11.1 billion, second only to the Netherlands' 21.6 billion.

The lira sell-off has deepened concern particularly about whether over-indebted companies will be able to pay back loans taken out in euros and dollars after years of overseas borrowing to fund a construction boom under Erdogan.

Economist Chad Bown, who specialises in trade issues, said Turkey accounted for just over four percent of U.S. steel imports in 2017, but a very small fraction of the aluminum brought into the country. "Look at what we were 16 years ago and look at us now", Erdogan told supporters.

In June, the U.S. Senate passed a bill prohibiting Turkey from buying F-35 fighter jets because of Brunson's imprisonment and Turkey's purchase of Russia's S-400 air defense system.

The Canadian dollar weakened to a more-than two-week low against its US counterpart as geopolitical risk rattled global financial markets, offsetting stronger-than-expected domestic jobs data. Turkey's energy minister announced on August 8 that Turkey will keep buying liquid natural gas from Iran in violation of USA sanctions.

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