November 13, 2020
Iranian stock market investors protested for the third day in Tehran outside the Securities and Exchange Organization to demand their lost savings.
The protesters demanded the resignation of Iran’s Minister of Finance and Economic Affairs, Farhad Dejpasand.
“Incompetent minister, resign, resign!” they chanted.
On November 10, Ali Sahraei, CEO of the Tehran Stock Exchange said some of the resources of the National Development Fund would be allocated for the stabilization of the stock market capital. But stock market investors signaled their skepticism at the promise and chanted “Liar! Liar! What happened to the national funds?”.
Before this, many Iranian MPs had warned about the meddling of state-affiliated companies and other institutions in the stock market.
Amir Hossein Ghazizadeh, the deputy speaker of parliament, said on October 2, that 90% of the stock market was under the control of stock law firms affiliated with state-owned companies or other state affiliated economic institutions.
Iran’s stock market plummeted in the past days and fell by 3225 points on November 10.
Some experts blame the stock market decline on changes in the devaluation of the national currency after the US media announced Joe Biden’s win in the presidential elections.
Others say the government is responsible.
In comments carried by the IRGC affiliated Tasnim News Agency on October 20, Minister of Finance Dejpasand implied that the government used the stock market to compensate for its budget deficit.
“I would like to inform you that fortunately, as a result of the measures devised by the government, in the last six months, we have been able to make up for the shortfall of our resources from the sale of securities and the transfer of shares of state-owned companies.”
In an October 3 article, the state-run Aftab-Yazd daily also stated that Iran used the stock market to make up for its deficits.
“In the name of privatization and to compensate for the budget deficit, the government decided to sell and transfer the remaining shares to the stock exchange; In other words, it tried to compensate for its budget deficit by selling the remaining shares in companies whose shares had already been listed on the stock exchange, and to carry out privatization in a different way, which has so far been nothing but an unsuccessful experience,” the daily wrote.