ANKARA- Turkish locals' forex and precious metals holdings rose by around $2.23 billion to $225.24 billion as of April 16, data from the central bank showed on Thursday, as Turks turned to hard currencies again after a brief selloff.
The holdings have eased from a record high of $236.11 billion in January. Their fall accelerated in mid-March, as Turks converted their hard currencies to benefit from the lira's sharp decline against the dollar.
Turks have flocked to hard currencies in recent years as a hedge against double-digit inflation and a volatile lira, which lost 20% of its value against the dollar last year. It dropped 12% in a week after President Tayyip Erdogan sacked the former hawkish central bank governor last month.
When adjusted for the parity effect, the data showed the hard currency holdings rose by $1.35 billion in the week to April 16.
Data also showed on Thursday that foreign investors bought $164.9 million worth of Turkish government bonds in the week to April 16, and their holdings in stocks were unchanged.
Separately, the central bank's gross forex reserves rose to $49.69 billion in the same period from $49.38 billion a week earlier.
(Reporting by Ali Kucukgocmen Editing by Daren Butler) ((firstname.lastname@example.org , @alikucukgocmen; +905319306206; Reuters Messaging: Reuters Messaging: email@example.com))