Today's Zaman

Bank Asya shareholders dismiss fund’s statement on possible sale

A statement from the deposit insurance fund (DIF) that Islamic lender Bank Asya would either be sold or liquidated by the end of May has no legal basis and its shareholders will never agree to such forced maneuvers, Süleyman Ta?ba?, a lawyer for Bank Asya shareholders said. Selling the bank is not legally possible according to banking law, he explained, adding that the bank's equity capital ratio is still strong; it has TL 1.35 billion in equities and another TL 1.4 billion deposited with the central bank. Plus, the shareholders still hold ownership. Ta?ba? criticized DIF's irresponsible statements, adding that all parties should respect the judicial process that is currently under way with regards to the bank's future.

Union vows to object to growing number of layoffs at Bank Asya

The growing number of dismissals at the recently seized Islamic lender Bank Asya has drawn a reaction from the Pak Finance Employees Union (Pak Finans-??), which announced it would file complaints against the layoffs and demand that those dismissed be reinstated. In a written statement on Friday, Pak Finans-?? said nine regional managers, 13 branch managers, two directors and 264 workers have been laid off since Feb. 3. In the latest of what the union calls politically motivated decisions, three managerial-level employees were dismissed on Wednesday, the statement read. The common denominator of those discharged from the bank is that they all refused to overlook irregularities and criminal practices that had been ordered by the managing board.

Shareholders vow to challenge seizure of Turkey’s Bank Asya

Regulators announced on Friday they would take over the lender, saying its financial structure and management presented a threat to the financial system. Shareholders of the bank will bring charges against both the banking watchdog and Turkey's insurance deposit fund, lawyer Suleyman Ta?ba? said. The lawyer disputed that the latest regulatory action had been done to protect depositors, noting that Asya was profitable again. The editor of the Gülen-affiliated Zaman newspaper said he was concerned about further arrests and seizures of businesses with links to the cleric. Shares of Bank Asya were suspended temporarily on the Istanbul watchlist market on Monday after Friday's seizure of the bank, the Istanbul bourse said.

Bank Asya shares jump by 42 percent following announcement

The value of the shares in Bank Asya have jumped 41.8 percent following a recent announcement by the bank saying documents belonging to 90 percent of privileged shareholders have been sent to the banking watchdog. The bank's shares were priced at TL 0.95 on Turkey's stock exchange, Borsa ?stanbul (B?ST), at 4 p.m. on Thursday. Thursday's reading was 76 percent higher than the historic low of TL 0.54, recorded in September 2014. The interim board established by the TMSF after the takeover announced on April 9 that 152 out of 185 privileged shareholders had submitted their documents to the BDDK. Since that day, Bank Asya shares have risen by 41.8 percent, strengthening shareholders' hand in their bid to take back the management of the bank.

Former CB governor: Bank Asya is strong, nation will suffer if gov’t sinks it’

Former central bank governor Durmu? Y?lmaz, who is running for Parliament in the June 7 general election on the Nationalist Movement Party (MHP) ticket, has criticized the Justice and Development Party (AK Party) government over its efforts to sink Bank Asya, claiming that the bank is strong and that it will be the nation that suffers most if the bank is destroyed. Y?lmaz said the public authority would have the duty of taking necessary action if Bank Asya had been involved in any wrongdoing; however, he said no clear or concrete mistakes, allegedly committed by the bank, have been revealed so far.

Watchdog warned over possible penalty for Bank Asya action

As uncertainties over the management of the Islamic lender Bank Asya continue, auditors from the Banking Regulation and Supervision Agency (BDDK) who are uneasy about a possible penalty that they may be subject to, have warned the agency, since the takeover decision was not made at a general assembly meeting of the bank. A news report in Bugün daily on Monday said the BDDK's auditors are worried about a possible fine for the takeover decision and had called on the agency's top officials to convene a Bank Asya general assembly meeting. The report further claims that the auditors expect a penalty of around TL 8-10 billion for the failure to gain a general assembly decision in the handing over of the management of the bank.

TMSF refuses to relinquish management control of Bank Asya

In spite of the fact that more than 60 percent of Bank Asya's A-type shareholders have submitted the documents requested by the Banking Regulation and Supervision Agency (BDDK) that were the basis for recently taking control of the management of the bank, the watchdog agency has not given up that control, stoking claims that the management takeover was part of campaign of intimidation against the lender. Many believe that the government is not allowing the supposedly independent BDDK to give management control back to the partners. Even though the bank recorded a TL 875 million loss in 2014, its non-performing ratio is still one of the highest in the sector at about 18 percent.

Bank Asya seeks immediate return of ‘hijacked’ management rights

Turkey's largest Islamic lender, Bank Asya, is demanding that the state-run Savings Deposit Insurance Fund (TMSF) return the bank's rights to control its management following strong indications that the fund's decision to take over control of the lender's board has no legal basis and is politically motivated. Turkey's banking watchdog, the Banking Regulation and Supervision Agency (BDDK), handed management control of 63 percent of the privileged shares of Bank Asya over to state savings funds on Tuesday, citing a lack of certain key documents as the reason why the bank cannot maintain its operations. The bank's shareholders are currently preparing to provide the watchdog with the required documents and the bank has separately taken legal action to revoke Tuesday's intervention.

Unlawful intervention in Bank Asya to backfire on markets, experts warn

A midnight police raid on the headquarters of Turkey's largest Islamic bank after a banking watchdog's decision to take over the bank's management on Tuesday lacks legal grounds and will likely stir further speculation in financial markets, pundits warned. The bank vowed to take legal action in response to Tuesday's decision. Economists highlighted on Wednesday that intervention in the bank's board can only be temporary, because the bank cannot technically be seized unless depositors withdraw their money from Bank Asya. Early on Wednesday, loyal Bank Asya clients flocked to branches across Turkey to shore up the Islamic lender with new deposits.

Bank Asya: Battle for survival against a presidential onslaught

From 2008 to 2013, Bank Asya's assets and net revenue grew annually at 28 percent and 12 percent, respectively. Its reputation and business were soaring when, in December 2013 and without prior warning, President Erdo?an launched a powerful and concentrated attack on the bank, alleging that it was weak and insolvent. Despite losing almost half its market value during one excruciating week in September 2014 and reporting its first ever quarterly loss in 18 years of TL 301 million, Bank Asya has responded by highlighting its capital adequacy ratio of 18.3 percent. Ultimately, the solution to Bank Asya's current predicament ideally lies with President Erdo?an withdrawing his unfounded allegations.

‘Erdogan's statements on Bank Asya constitute a major crime'

Speculation publicly expressed by President Recep Tayyip Erdo?an that Bank Asya doesn't have a sound structure and his obvious attempts to sink this bank constitute a crime under Turkish law, according to Selin Sayek Böke, the Republican People's Party (CHP) deputy chair in charge of the economy. Sharing her opinions about the current economic situation in Turkey, Böke stated that Turkey has further potential for growth, but its economy is currently in stagnation. She attributes this situation to structural problems. The current decline in the practice of democracy and the erosion of the rule of law will likely cause further trouble ahead, as investors are already unwilling to make big investments in a country with an increasingly authoritarian government and leaders.

Bank Asya resumes trade after ban lifted

Turkey's stock exchange on Monday lifted the ban on trading Bank Asya shares that it imposed on Aug. 7 amid a smear campaign conducted by pro-government media outlets about the ownership status of the lender. The stocks of the private lender slumped 20.16 percent to TL 0.99 at the end of the second session. According to a statement made before the first session by the Public Disclosure Platform (KAP), the shares of the bank has been opened to trade at the base price of TL 1.23 within a price margin of plus or minus 10 percent.

State agency criticized for speculative Bank Asya report

The state-run Anadolu Agency cited last week an official from the Banking Regulation and Supervision Agency (BDDK) as saying the Islamic lender Bank Asya had been put under the scope of Article 70 of Turkey's Banking Law, a move that gives the BDDK the power to restrict or temporarily halt the bank's operations, as well as to merge it with another bank. Bank Asya reacted strongly to the report, saying the bank will file lawsuits against the BDDK and media outlets that spread the speculative news report. Market observers criticized the Anadolu Agency for sharing exclusive details - the authenticity of which cannot be verified - regarding a privately run financial institution, suggesting that such reports are in violation of laws regulating and protecting banks in Turkey.

Economy being sabotaged to sink Bank Asya, says Avni

Twitter user @fuatavnifuat claimed in a series of tweets sent on Tuesday that Deputy Prime Minister Ali Babacan and the Banking Regulation and Supervision Agency (BDDK) are sabotaging the Turkish economy in order to sink Bank Asya. Avni - who claims to be one of President Recep Tayyip Erdo?an's advisors - said Babacan authorized the BDDK to put 10 Turkish banks under close monitoring in order to make it seem as if it was not attempting to target only the Islamic lender Bank Asya. The unidentified Twitter user correctly predicted the second wave of arrests of police officers allegedly close to the Fethullah Gülen-inspired Hizmet movement last month. Avni had tweeted on a Monday night that raids would be conducted against the officers early the next day in the morning. The raids took place accordingly.

Bank Asya seeks restart of suspended trading

Turkish Islamic lender Bank Asya, whose shares were suspended and removed from all indices on Aug. 7 amid political pressure, will ask the authorities to end a month-long trading suspension, CEO Ahmet Beyaz said. Beyaz's statement comes on the heels of reports in the media last week that Turkey's banking watchdog the Banking Regulation and Supervision Agency (BDDK) had put Bank Asya under close monitoring. The reports claimed this would give the BDDK the power to restrict or temporarily halt Bank Asya's operations. Bank Asya said it will file a lawsuit against the watchdog for remaining indifferent to a smear campaign against the bank. Beyaz also said that Bank Asya would consider selling stakes or subsidiaries in case of a capital adequacy problem.

Bank Asya account holders threatened against making deposits

Holders of accounts with the Islamic lender Bank Asya have reportedly been subjected to threats about making deposits, while being urged to withdraw money from their accounts. Individuals said they had received calls from blocked numbers who had mysteriously obtained information regarding their bank account. The aim of the government seems to be to create panic among depositors of the bank and to frighten them so that they will rush to withdraw their money, throwing the bank into a liquidity crisis that would eventually justify the nationalization of the bank. Observers have called on BDDK head Mukim Öztekin to step down because the watchdog's reputation as an independent institution has become highly questionable since these recent developments.

Bank Asya to sue authorities for inaction in face of smear campaign

Turkey's private Bank Asya has said it will fight authorities for not taking action even though a "massive smear campaign" against the financial institution has been ongoing for nine months. The private Islamic lender said in a statement on Thursday that it is going to fight the country's bank watchdog at court due to its silence amidst daily attacks on the bank. The statement came on a day when the Banking Regulation and Supervision Agency (BDDK) has reportedly taken over a wide range of powers at Bank Asya. The move gives the BDDK watchdog the authority to restrict or temporarily halt Bank Asya's operations, as well as to merge it with another bank.

Bank Asya defies uncertainty, says all normal

Turkish Islamic lender Bank Asya said in a note to Borsa ?stanbul that the company continued its banking operations smoothly, defying any kind of uncertainty regarding the bank’s shareholders and board. The bank’s statements follow on the heels of an announcement from state bank Ziraat Bankas? a few hours earlier. Ziraat said it had ended unofficial talks to acquire Bank Asya, saying such a purchase was not in line with its priorities. Observers said the statement from Bank Asya would help ease earlier concerns that the bank would be seized by the state amid an intense pressure from President-elect Recep Tayyip Erdo?an’s ruling party.

Government's Bank Asya operation brought to parliamentary agenda

Reactions are snowballing against the government's operation to force the closure of the participation bank Bank Asya as part of its fight against the Hizmet movement, with the matter brought to Parliament's agenda in the form of a parliamentary question from the Republican People's Party (CHP). CHP ?stanbul deputy Umut Oran directed a question at Deputy Prime Minister Ali Babacan to ask for the rationale behind the government's attempts to sink a private bank and risking a domino effect which could damage the entire economy. Two weeks ago, Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdo?an said that Bank Asya's financial situation was worsening. His remarks were criticized strongly as a premeditated act intended to damage the bank, which is a crime punishable with a jail sentence of between one and three years. After the prime minister's words, the bank's shares in Borsa ?stanbul (B?ST) plummeted.

Bank Asya stands firm as gov't pressure intensifies

Deputy Prime Minister Ali Babacan has said the public Ziraat bank is considering purchasing Turkey's Bank Asya, a move that many have interpreted as the authorities' latest effort to crush the lender as a form of vengeance against the Hizmet movement, with which Bank Asya is affiliated. However, Bank Asya said no such talks have taken place. Pressure on the bank intensified on Thursday as an agreement between the Finance Ministry and Bank Asya allowing the bank to collect taxes was canceled. The bank said it will take legal action against these decisions. A source involved in the financial market who asked to remain anonymous said the government has apparently launched a new campaign, this time trying to purchase the bank after numerous failed attempts to sink the bank earlier this year.

Syndicate content