Iran intensifies crackdown on currency speculation
Iran has intensified its crackdown on foreign currency speculation as authorities and official news outlets blame speculators for a historic drop in the value of national currency rial.
Iranian judiciary’s provincial department in the capital Tehran said on Tuesday that the body will team up with Iranian finance ministry’s financial intelligence unit to identify and arrest “disruptors” of the country’s foreign currency market.
The Economic Security Police in Tehran province also announced that some 88 people had been arrested for illegal involvement in future trading of foreign currency and gold through launching channels and groups on social media platforms.
A Tuesday report by the official IRNA news agency said that hundreds of bank accounts used by individuals for illegal money changing activities had been blocked by the Iranian intelligence ministry.
“These individuals were engaged in illegal trading of foreign currency in the unofficial market or were involved in future trading and have caused a disruption in the country’s foreign exchange system,” said the report, citing an intelligence ministry statement published earlier this month.
Reports published by the IRNA and the semi-official Fars news agency rejected claims that Iran’s rial had continued to drop against hard currencies on Tuesday which was an official holiday in Iran, as they insisted that speculators were overcharging the prices to be able to increase their profit margins in the upcoming days.
That comes as currency price monitoring websites and reports in local media showed that the price of dollar had reached an all-time high of 415,000 against the Iranian rial on the close of trade on Monday.