September 24, 2014

Bank Asya shares soar after week-long ban

Bank Asya's shares increased by 10.14 percent to TL 0.76 after the private lender resumed trading in the second session of Turkey's stock exchange on Wednesday, six days after a ban was imposed on the lender amid ownership concerns propagated by pro-government media outlets.

The stocks of Bank Asya were reopened to trade at 2 p.m. at TL 0.69 -- the base the lender was priced at on its last trading day. After decreasing to TL 0.64, the shares surged to TL 0.76.

Issuing a statement to the Public Disclosure Platform (KAP) on Wednesday, the Borsa İstanbul (BİST) announced that the shares of Bank Asya, opening to trade at TL 0.69 within a price margin of plus or minus 10 percent, resumed trading after a temporary ban.

Bank Asya, Turkey's largest Islamic lender, has been under serious attacks by President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan and pro-government media outlets since a corruption and bribery scandal went public in December of last year. Then-Prime Minister Erdoğan accused the Hizmet movement and institutions allegedly affiliated with it of planning a coup attempt. Bank Asya was also targeted by a smear campaign aimed at the movement -- a campaign led by Erdoğan and his allies, even though comments discrediting the image of publicly traded companies or/and banks constitute a crime.

Published on Today's Zaman, 24 September 2014, Wednesday