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Turkish Lira Firms, Eyes on Central Bank

ISTANBUL, Dec 7 (Reuters) - The Turkish lira firmed 1% on Tuesday, recouping its losses a day earlier triggered by persisting concerns about President Tayyip Erdogan's push to lower interest rates, with investors looking out for any signs of fresh central bank intervention.

At 1033 GMT, the lira traded at 13.6800, strengthening from a close of 13.8090 on Monday. It touched an all-time low of 14.00 last week after a 30% plunge over the last month.

The selloff has been driven by aggressive monetary easing which economists and opposition politicians say is reckless. Inflation jumped to a three-year high of 21.3% last month. 

Despite its depleted reserves, the central bank intervened in markets twice last week over what it called unhealthy prices, keeping the lira below 14 to the dollar. 

Under pressure from Erdogan, the central bank has slashed its policy rate by 400 basis points since September and is expected to ease policy again this month.

Turkey's real rates are deeply negative, a red flag for fleeing investors and for Turkish savers who have flocked to hard currencies to protect their wealth.

Reporting by Daren Butler Editing by Ece Toksabay

Source: Reuters

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