Turkish Lira Drops to Monthly Lows on Sanctions Fears and Multibillion-Dollar Iranian Sanctions Evasion Scheme

The Turkish lira remained under pressure during the second half of Tuesday's NY currency trading session, trading as low as 5.922 lira to the U.S. dollar after news broke that one of Turkey's largest banks was charged in Manhattan Federal Court in a multibillion-dollar Iranian sanctions evasion scheme.

According to U.S. authorities, senior officials at Halkbank, the 7th biggest Turkish bank, with the help of senior Turkish officials, helped launder billions of dollars of Iranian oil revenues.

"The bank’s audacious conduct was supported and protected by high-ranking Turkish government officials, some of whom received millions of dollars in bribes to promote and protect the scheme. Halkbank will now have to answer for its conduct in an American court.,” said U.S. Attorney Geoffrey S. Berman.

The Halkbank case comes just a day after the United States levied new sanctions on Turkey for President Erdogan's brazen invasion of northern Syria.

Since the beginning of October, the lira has tumbled more than 4% against the USD.

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