(photo credit: JPOST STAFF)
ANKARA, Oct 21 - Turkey's banking regulator urged the public on Saturday to ignore rumors about financial institutions, in an apparent dismissal of a report that some Turkish banks face billions of dollars of US fines over alleged violations of Iran sanctions.
"It has been brought to the public's attention that stories, that are rumors in nature, about our banks are not based on documents or facts, and should not be heeded," the BDDK banking regulator said in a statement, adding that Turkey's banks were functioning well.
The Haberturk newspaper on Saturday reported that six banks potentially face substantial fines, citing senior banking sources. It did not name the banks. One bank faces a penalty in excess of $5 billion, while the rest of the fines will be lower, it said.
Reuters was not able to verify the report.
Two senior Turkish economy officials told Reuters that Turkey has not received any notice from the United States about such penalties, adding that US regulators would normally inform the finance ministry's financial crimes investigation board.
The report comes as relations between Washington and Ankara have been strained by a series of diplomatic rows, prompting both countries to cut back issuing visas to each other's citizens.