Turkey’s economic sentiment positive for first time since currency crisis

Turkey’s economic confidence rose to more than 100 points in July, the first positive reading since currency volatility increased in mid-2018, according to a benchmark index published by the Turkish Statistical Institute on Thursday.

The index climbed to 100.1 points this month from 97.8 in June. Any reading above 100 points reflects overall optimism among consumers and businesses about the current and future economic situation in the country.

Turkey’s government has sought to stimulate a fast recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic by keeping essential businesses open and by encouraging banks to lend to cash-strapped companies and consumers. Borrowing by consumers reached record levels in May, according to data published by the Banks Association of Turkey (TBB) this week.

The increase in the index in July was led by improving sentiment in the services and retail industries, where confidence rose to 114.8 points and 109.6 points respectively. Consumer confidence edged down to 79.5 points from 81.7 in June, the institute said.