Bank Asya shares removed from Turkish bourse
Istanbul, August 15, 2014
Shares in troubled Turkish Islamic lender Bank Asya were temporarily removed from the Istanbul stock exchange on Thursday in a further blow to a bank caught in the middle of a damaging political feud.
The Istanbul bourse said the stock would be removed from all indices from Friday, a regulatory requirement when shares are suspended for over five days. The stock would stay suspended until uncertainty over the bank's ownership is resolved.
Bank Asya shares were initially suspended last week because of sharp volatility, following conflicting reports about the bank's ownership structure.
Top government officials appeared to be at odds last week over a possible state purchase of Bank Asya. Deputy Prime Minister Ali Babacan said state-run Ziraat Bank, which is looking to launch its own Islamic banking unit, could buy. But an adviser to Prime Minister Tayyip Erdogan later denied such a plan.
The bank has seen its profits and capital base collapse since December, when it found itself at the centre of a power struggle between Erdogan and Fethullah Gulen, an Islamic cleric whose sympathisers founded the bank.
The stock exchange said companies had two months to overcome such uncertainties according to market regulations, with the possibility of a further month's extension, after which the stock could be de-listed. - Reuters